Since April is National Poetry Month, it is a good time to apply poetry to learning concepts and have some fun. One new book from Crystal Springs Books, "Poems for Math Practice" combines the many benefits of poetry with the introduction and reinforcement of math concepts.
Appealing to diverse learners
Children naturally enjoy stringing rhyming and silly words together and also like the predictability that verse often provides. Laureen Reynolds, author of this book, writes that the poems and activities in her book will attract diverse learners, not only those that love math. Each poem addresses a primary math concept such as sorting, number sense,adding ,subtracting, time and money. The related activities are arranged by group size so that they can be used for an individual student, partners or the whole class. There is also a literature extension for each poem. The book prints each of the twenty poems in black and white on a perforated single page for ease of duplication and also includes a full-page color perforated transparency of each poem in the back of the book.
The poems also provide a connection for the students between mathematics and what occurs in their lives. Since numbers are abstract, the words and pictures of these poems provide the link to their daily observations. For example, the poem "Laundry Day" is about sorting, sorting your socks, that is.
Poems are fundamentally the sound of language and it's capacity for magic and emotion. Combining poetry with math concepts may prove magical. In any event, it does seem that we all remember things better if we attach a rhyme to it.
The book is recommended for grades 1-3 and is available in Chicago at The Learning Tree.
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