Using books to inspire hands on math learning is such fun! One of our favorites was the preschool math activities we did with The Cat in the Hat.
We read the story and then got out our Cat in the Hat hats. The kids used them to measure how many hats tall different objects were.
Non-standard measurement is a great way for kids to practice counting, learn to estimate, and introduce children to the concepts of length, width and height.
And lots of hands-on fun!
After we were done measuring, we took a good look at the hats and discovered that the stripes had a pattern! My 7 year old explained to the others that the stripes are an ABAB pattern. The kids practiced saying ABAB as they touched the red and white stripes and then we were ready to go on a Hat Pattern Hunt!
We went around the house and looked for things that also had an ABAB pattern. The kids had lots of fun finding patterns and every time they found one we would check the hat cut out to verify that it was an ABAB pattern. Since doing this they have found ABAB patterns everywhere we go!
A note from Megan:
I love that Dr. Seuss has inspired so many to read and am so thankful that I have had the opportunity to experience it first hand. I had never really loved his book, There’s a Wocket in My Pocket!, until one of my high school students, who had struggled with reading his whole life, rapped it for the elementary school kids at their school celebration.
This big, cool high schooler spent days practicing and totally rocked his performance! That day not only fostered a love of reading in the little kids who were attending, it made him and the other kids in my class love and value reading as well. Needless to say There’s a Wocket in My Pocket! had a very special place in my heart.
But I have to say the more I’ve learned about Dr. Seuss the more complicated my feelings about his books became. His early racist ads are quite shocking if you haven’t seen them yet and as I have read more about him the more I realized the racist overtones of some of his books. I personally have made the decision to no longer write book activities for his books. As Oprah says, when we know better, we can do better and it no longer feels right for me.
We have a large collections of his books and I am not getting rid of them. But I will be teaching my kids more about his past including the racist parts. It’s important to know our history and the impact it’s had on others. And it’s important to me as a blogger to share things with you I would use in my own classroom or family.