I can't get in to my classroom to set up yet. So no classroom tour and I wasn't sure I'd get something up for organizing for instruction. However, I had a technology meeting with my principal and our jewel strands had come in. My teammate from my previous school had lots of materials from Math Their Way.
I had used the jewel strands before and put in a request for my new team. We ordered these from EAI Counting Jewels. You get 5 strands (each a different color) that you cut apart into sets. The read and orange do look similar. I cut the red strand into sets of 5, orange in sets of 4, yellow in sets of 3, green in sets of 2 and blue into 1s. To prep the jewels for our first lesson, I pre-bagged them. Each bag was organized by 12 (except reds): 12 blues, 6 greens, 4 yellows, 3 oranges and 2 reds. This made 13 bags to be shared in pairs for up to 26 kids. For blues and greens I cut them into sets of 12 first for less counting. : ) Organizing new Math materials as soon as the order arrives really helps.
My little helper.
Do you have a special way to organize your Math materials?
If you haven't used counting jewels, they are a great tool for students to show numbers in different ways. Instead of simply decomposing a number into two parts, the kinders find all different kinds of ways to represent the numbers (ie 3, 1, 1 as well as 3, 2). They can sort them into little piles. We have drawn circles on whiteboards to sort into. Math Their Way has a page with circles to sort into. I also made a set for the SmartBoard to go along with the actual strands. You can use them for number sense prior to teaching equations.