Learning Maths Through Metaphors

Primary teaching resources for Maths are able to bring alive what can be a dry topic. A sound handling of maths is a crucial tool for a child to learn, and the sooner they get a good understanding of numbers the better. Time was teachers would spend days devising and making tools with which to make maths a stimulating visual experience. Now, though, there are a number of primary teaching resources for sale which engage with kids on a strong visual level.

Children’s books have lots of pictures because children understand pictures better than they do words or numbers. That’s why the best primary teaching resources need to offer children a visual key for solving number problems. Easily recognisable images children can relate to are used to teach numeracy in a fun manner.

Money is taught with the help of cards depicting sweets; each sweet is one unit, boxes of sweets represent tens and jars of sweets represent hundreds. It’s a whole lot less dry than discussing pence pounds. The majority of young people of primary school age won’t ever have managed a lot of currency, however they are only too familiar with counting out and eying up sweets. These sweet cards were the very first, but currently there are a lot of Place Value card sets, using diverse entertaining metaphors to teach practical mathematical skills. Fractions are shown through divisible items like pizzas, pies, puddings and tarts. Similar sets enable the same subjects to be taught but with slightly different emphasis, to ensure that children can separate and recognise the discrete tasks involved in more complex sums (e.g. facts to 10 can be taught in many ways with Digit Pop Ups, Busy Boats, Zillions, Wish Fish and Lady Bugs). The Monster Number Line goes further, teaching numbers as high as 30, 50 or even 100 depending on the abilities and understanding of the child.

It can be difficult to get boys to engage with numbers. Number lines and missing numbers are taught with X-Planes. Footie Facts ensure the attention of so many boys.

The Multiplication Rainbow has been a particular success. The Multiplication Rainbow was designed a more interesting and enagging alternatie to the classic multiplication table. Numbers are arranged along arcs of the rainbow, rather than in rows and columns. The reverse is left blank so the children can fill it in themselves.

Playground Pictures extend the learning experience into the playground or garden. PVC wall pictures display important primary Maths information in a bold and colourful manner. Available pictures include rabbits, stars and flowers. All can be easily fixed to walls or fences with glue, screws or nails.

First and foremost, the items are supposed to make Maths fun. Concepts which may seem simple to grown ups require a lots of memorisation on the part of a young child. Using fun, relatable concepts makes that job far less difficult for them.

Chris Mayo established Sweet Counter in order to provide teachers and pupils with better ways of learning. She works with a dedicated team of assistants to produce new and innovative products that meet the teaching demands of primary school learners.

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