Favorite manipulatives

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Abcgirl123, Nov 8, 2016.

  1. Abcgirl123

    Abcgirl123 Rookie

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    Nov 8, 2016

    My classroom is lacking severely in this area. We have the little gears and we have little people that stick together but that is about it. What are your favorite manipulative so I can ask my director for some more.
     
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  3. heatherberm

    heatherberm Cohort

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    Nov 8, 2016

    I've used Legos for just about everything - addition, subtraction, regrouping, fractions, all kinds of stuff. And they're fun to occasionally just play with. :)
     
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  4. Abcgirl123

    Abcgirl123 Rookie

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    Nov 8, 2016

    I've got Legos too. I just feel like during learning centers they have the same toys to play with. I would like to switch things out every once in awhile to keep them interested.
     
  5. Obadiah

    Obadiah Groupie

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    Nov 9, 2016

    From a 3rd grade teaching perspective, Legos, in my opinion, even without direct instruction are one of the best tools for brain development in the concepts of place value and equality. Natural play of interlocking smaller pieces that fit into bigger pieces help develop these concepts. The old fashioned scales, where one amount is place on one tray and another amount on the other tray also help with these concepts. Toy clocks in which the minute hand moves in conjunction with the hour hand are helpful pre-learning tools, again, even without direct time-telling instruction. Another teacher in my school suggested that kids need to play more board games which helps develop number line sense; that might be a bit much for independent pre-school play, but might be useful in a guided lesson. Personally, I consider books to be a manipulative. Pretending to read or looking at the pictures is an important pre-reading skill that many are absolutely missing at home. When I first began student teaching, I recall reading aloud from books was being replaced by film strips (kind of like a slide show on one roll of film) with a recording reading the story. This was OK, (and even I enjoyed watching the Bernstein Bears), but research indicates the teacher's or parent's voice neurologically shapes the child for future independent reading more proficiently than recordings. I realize I've drifted off the subject of independent learning centers, but are Hap Palmer recordings still being used? Those or any action songs or marching to music provide excellent brain preparation for upper grades.
     
  6. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Nov 10, 2016

    When I taught preschool, kids loved our sensory table. It's not really a manipulative, but if you don't have one, I highly suggest it.

    Talking about actual manipulatives, I like things that can be sorted and counted in a variety of ways (pics below).

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    [​IMG][​IMG]
     
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  7. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Nov 10, 2016

    What about play dough? You could make some with kool aid cheap & have each child use their own. What about socks from dollar store to sort? Dice?
     
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  8. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Groupie

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    Nov 11, 2016

    bristle blocks, puzzles (young children who have good puzzle skills grow up to be better at math), counting games, beads & string, any game or toy that helps fine motor skills
     
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  9. DizneeTeachR

    DizneeTeachR Virtuoso

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    Nov 11, 2016

    What about leaves...color or shape? I taught first & I had a bag of leaves. Students grabbed one & we graphed it. They loved it. Plastic toys like Dinos or something of that nature.

    I worry that some legos are pretty small. What about duplo or unfix cubes.
     
  10. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Groupie

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    Nov 11, 2016

    We had the tiny Legos in Pre-K.
    They were not a problem; no one put them in their mouths, no one lost any , they built some great things! It probably helped that we had a 4 person Lego table
     
  11. Ashley Rives

    Ashley Rives New Member

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    Nov 14, 2016

    We love the attribute bears for sorting and patterning. We also love magnetic blocks (like MagnaTiles, but we have a cheaper version). My kiddos also like dominoes for sorting, matching and weighing on a balance scale.
     
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  12. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Nov 15, 2016

    I like the attribute bears too. The pom poms with the muffing tins are a great idea too. I was thinking of making something like that for center time and using a pair of plastic tongs for them to pick up the pom poms for some fine motor practice.
     
  13. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Nov 15, 2016

    Tongs are good. A spoon is good too.
     
  14. Angie

    Angie Guest

    Nov 15, 2016

    I love the idea of the colored muffin pans. I would probably not use the pom poms, because I work in a pediatric office, and we've had to remove several of those from little noses, and they can cause a nasty infection.
     
  15. ChildWhisperer

    ChildWhisperer Groupie

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    Nov 15, 2016

    I recently put little bathroom tiles in my manipulatives center.
    I numbered them with permanent marker , I drew shapes on some, drew dots on others (to count/match the numbers), and wrote uppercase and lowercase letters (also to match if they choose to).
    I left some blank for them to just count if they want. I had a lot of tiles.. :p
     
  16. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Phenom

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    Nov 18, 2016

    I have some larger pom poms so I don't think they'd fit up noses :toofunny:
     
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