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Author: Robert A. Williams, Joy Lubawy, Debbie Cunningham
Publisher: Gryphon House
Pages: 256, © 2005
The authors of Preschool Math--a scientist, a Montessori teacher, and an Emergent Curriculum advocate--come from different backgrounds and all offer unique expertise to the book. This combination gives the book a particularly interesting and stimulating approach, and makes the book usable for any teacher. Preschool Math encourages teachers to listen to and observe young children to better understand how they think about their world. The book uses these prompts to expand into useful and appropriate math experiences. Teachers will encourage children to use their senses and bodies to explore ideas, record and talk about the concepts, and to learn how math feels, tastes, and looks. Activities in Preschool Math use the scientific ideals of testing, evaluating, exploring, experimenting, problem solving, making guesses, and forming a hypothesis, while utilizing interesting materials and environments in mathematical ways.
Special features of this book
- Each activity includes assessment following standards set by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
- Activities are geared for a range of ages and abilities, and many types of learning environments.
- Experiences included in the book originate in children's own explorations of math concepts in day-to-day play.
- Preschool Math encourages hands-on playful and child-focused experiences that guide children towards a sound understanding of the basic math concepts.
- Preschool Math encourages teachers, caregivers, students and parents to create math experiences from everyday events and materials.
Preschool Math encourages children's thoughtful considerations, theory development, and logical exploration. It discourages interrogation or forcing a yes or no answer. Teachers are encouraged to observe children's play when introducing math concepts, or environment in ways that are appropriate at that time and for those children. This approach helps children learn math concepts as they are ready for them.
Preschool Math is written so that teachers can easily access and use the activities. The authors suggest materials and activities as well as describe ways to talk with the children or to encourage further exploration over future days or weeks. Teachers can find activities that best suit children's needs, or use the ideas to set up environments that will encourage children to explore math. Preschool Math will enrich the lives of children, introduce concepts that build foundations for a lifetime of learning, encourage wondering and exploration, and provide encouragement for adults to make early childhood a real math playground!
"The book is written for classroom teachers, but most of the activities are easily completed at home. If you desire a planned out lesson with materials lists, vocabulary, steps to follow, assessment ideas and additional suggestions, this book will be perfect for you! However, if you’re more like me and just want to grab ideas here and there, the book is still very useful!"
Robert Williams is Professor Emeritus at Southern Illinois University. He is currently acting as lead consultant for the NSF-funded Building Base Line Objectives for Children’s Knowledge and Skills in Science (BLOCKS) program at the University of Texas. The teachers and researchers in BLOCKS are assessing what skills four-year-olds can attain before they enter kindergarten.
Dr. Bob has been conducting workshops and conference sessions related to the BLOCKS program. He has taught in elementary, high school, and junior high school in addition to being a college professor. His past work has also included federal- and state-funded projects in water education. He has traveled extensively and conducted workshops and worked with children throughout the United States, Asia, Europe, and Australia.
Robert Williams lives in Belmont, Texas on the banks of the Guadalupe River.
Joy Lubawy has 30 years experience in the classroom with young children and now travels Australia and New Zealand proving professional development in the areas of curriculum, imagination, creativity, and documentation. She has several other books and two music CD's to her credit as well. She currently is writing distance education packages for Ballarat University in Victoria.
Joy Lubawy lives in Wagga Wagga, NSW Australia.
Debbie Cunningham is the founder of Children's Montessori Academy in Titusville, Florida. She started working professionally with children in 1985 and saw limited early education opportunities in her area. After researching and learning more about child development and methods of instruction geared toward preschool children, she opened her own center in 1993. Working with young children at the Children's Montessori Academy has helped Debbie raise the standard of care for children and created a safe, healthy, educational environment.
Debbie Cunningham lives in Titusville, Florida.