Foreword by: Beth Graue
Publication Date: January 1, 2015
This practical book provides pre- and inservice teachers with an understanding of how math can be learned through play. The author helps teachers to recognize the mathematical learning that occurs during play, to develop strategies for mathematizing that play, and to design formal lessons that make connections between mathematics and play. Common Core State Standards are addressed throughout the text to demonstrate the ways in which play is critical to standards-based mathematics teaching, and to help teachers become more familiar with these standards. Classroom examples illustrate that, unlike most formal tasks, play offers children opportunities to solve nonroutine problems and to demonstrate a variety of mathematical ways of thinking—such as perseverance and attention to precision. This book will help put play back into the early childhood classroom where it belongs.
Amy Noelle Parks is associate professor of Mathematics Education at Michigan State University and former elementary school teacher.
“Smart, readable, relevant, and authentically focused on children.”
—From the Foreword by Elizabeth Graue, University of Wisconsin
“In this deceptively easy-to-read book, Amy Parks explains two things that could make a world of difference in early childhood and elementary classrooms: Mathematics isn’t something in a workbook—it’s a fascinating part of the real world; And playing in school isn’t a luxury—it’s an essential context for learning about all sorts of things, including mathematics. Through vignettes of children learning mathematics as they play, Parks helps teachers recognize their ‘answerability to the moment,’ eschewing someone else’s determination of ‘best practice’ in favor of what works with actual children eager to learn mathematics.”
—Rebecca New, School of Education, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill