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Saturday, March 1, 2014

Introducing Subtracto!



Hello everyone!  I've been a little sick with asthmatic bronchitis and some lower back pain.  It's been challenging to keep up with everything while feeling a little under the weather.  I wanted to share some fabulous, kid-friendly subtraction books that really explain the concept of taking away.  You see, many of my children were confusing addition with subtraction.  So, I thought bringing in an element of language arts might help the children to understand that when you take away, there's less of what you started with.  I've also been using songs, Duplos, and other manipulatives.  Some of the song titles that I especially like are:

"Five Little Monkeys Jumping On The Bed" by Twin Sisters
"Five Little Hot Dogs" by Dr. Jean
"Five Little Crabs" by Dr. Jean
"Roll Over" by Jack Hartmann

They're all very catchy songs, and they can use either their fingers or manipulatives, whatever you prefer.

I really think it's important to ask your students what motivates them.  So I did, and my students told me again that they would like me to do some of their subtraction papers with robots.  "Ok," I thought.  "Robots.  I can work with this.  Thank goodness they didn't say zombies!"   I discussed with my husband how my students seem like they get the concept when we're doing it whole group and small group, but when they go to do the worksheets, they clearly start adding instead of subtracting.  I asked him what we could do with a robot theme.  Here's the difference between men and women.  My husband immediately said "Removable arms."  He told me I could tell stories about arms getting blown off, exploding, and I thought "Wow, awesome!  Perfect!  Why didn't I think of that?"  Seriously, I think little boys (and big boys) just love dramatic battle action scenes.  Meanwhile I think more about cute little robots doing a dance.  Anyway, here's what we came up with:  Subtracto!  With removable arms!

Subtracto the Subtraction Robot!
Hopefully Jesus will not say "What?!  That's not a robot!  That's just cardboard and stuff!"  (see my Lego post)

So after we use Subtracto in whole group and small group, their seat work is going to be a robot-themed worksheet:


Last year, I made this robot guided reading book, and it was such a hit that I'm going to use it again to go along with Subtracto.


I would love to hear if any of you have songs or ideas to go along with the robot theme.  Please leave me a comment below and let me know what you're working on.

1 comment:

  1. The robot is so cute. I wonder if my husband would make me one, lol.

    Terri
    Kinder Princess

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