Throughout the years, I’ve found that manipulatives can include more than small objects or toys. My younger children LOVE using candy to practice their math facts. You can use small candy, cereal, or marshmallows as objects to add and subtract.
I found an M&M Math Pack on Pinterest and have used them since Bear was in Kindergarten. Bam Bam and Princess enjoy counting and working with these on +/- problems. I also adjusted the sheets for Bear to calculate exponents, decimals, and fractions as he got older. He doesn’t use these anymore but Bear definitely smiles each time I bring them out.
For these worksheets, you can use regular sized M&Ms but I prefer the mini candy because you can calculate higher solutions. Using the mini candy also allows you to serve a minimal amount if sweets to your child. Also, if you’re teaching a class, the mini M&M candies will spread across the room for much less money.
You can also use these options for holiday themed lessons! On Valentines Day use Conversation Hearts or on St. Patrick’s Day use green jelly beans. If you’re studying birds that week, use jelly beans and call them Robin’s Eggs! No matter how you decideto try this, candy always makes math more fun!
Comment below: How do you make math fun for your children?
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