Ever have one of those days where everything goes wrong from the moment you roll out of bed? (Of course you have, everyone has.) Well, LittleMan was having that kind of day today. So by the time his breakfast was finally eaten, morning chores were suffered through, and he begrudgingly sat down to complete his lessons, he was ready for something -anything- to turn his day around. Luckily we had a bag of gummy bears in our candy stash.
I grabbed an ice cube tray and laid out just enough gummy bears to establish a pattern, then had LittleMan complete the pattern.
Under normal circumstances, LittleMan is not a fan of patterning. In fact he often purposefully answers wrong because he just doesn’t enjoy it. But everything is better with candy. I’m happy to say, he didn’t complain or try to get out of doing it at all.
When he asked if he could eat a couple, I may have told him, “If you can pattern with it, you can eat it.”
[A little story about my childhood, I hated money-math when I was LittleMan’s age. Just like he does with patterning now, I used to purposefully answer questions wrong to try and get out of doing it. My wonderful Grandfather solved my parent’s homework-woes by pouring a jar of coins out on the table and telling me, “If you can count them, you can keep them.” I guess the apple didn’t fall far from the tree.]
If you wanted to make this a more “seasonal” project then I suggest jelly beans or peeps or, my personal favorite, Robin’s Eggs. For a candy-free option, colored plastic eggs in an egg carton or on an egg serving platter. We just did gummy bears because we happen to have them on hand.
These would also probably work well for other math problems: basic addition and subtraction, graphing based on color, even measuring! How many gummy bears long is your foot? Your favorite book? A pencil?
While I’m posting about gummy bears, here’s a really cool experiment that LittleMan and I did last year:
Basically you just get two clear containers, fill one with water and the other with salt water. Drop some gummy bears into each container and observe. We saw changes within a few hours. Some of the gummy bears were almost unrecognizable after one week.by