Were you wondering what I needed all of those egg cartons for? I asked for egg cartons a few weeks ago, because we need them for math. The first thing I did was cut off the lids and two sections from each carton. This made a container that had 10 sections in it. We practiced counting objects, looking at the egg carton as a row of 5 on top and a row of 5 on bottom. We have used these types of frames in our counting all year, so this was nothing new to the kids. The idea of using an egg carton was something new and different though. I have collections of random objects and we practiced counting different amounts of objects that were less than 10.
Then we moved on to numbers greater than 10, but less than 20. We call these numbers our Teen Numbers. The kids used the egg cartons to help count out the numbers. They knew that only 10 objects would fit in the egg carton, so the extras were our left over "ones" and did not make a 10. This process made it easier for kids to count objects, by making a group of ten first.
Thinking about the Teen Numbers as tens and ones has been easy for some kids and challenging for others. We have also started transferring this hands-on work with counting out Teen Numbers to worksheets. In the homework for the week, for example, kids are asked to draw circles (or an another shape) in the boxes. You will notice that there are only 10 spaces for them to draw in. This may remind them of the ten spaces we had in our egg cartons. Once their 10 frame is full, they have to draw the rest of the shapes in the space below. This way, they can easily see that 1 Ten and 4 Ones makes 14.
The teen numbers can be a tough concept for kindergartners, but the kids are doing really well! Hands-on math seems to easier for them, but I'd really like then to be able to show their work with tangible objects as well as on paper. If you have any questions about this, please feel free to ask!