Wednesday, March 30, 2011

the butterfly game

Wow have things been busy... I had the wonderful opportunity to attend the AMS conference in Chicago this past weekend and the experience was amazing. There's something to be said to be surrounded by 3,000 fellow Montessorians who believe in and share the same philosophy of teaching as you do! (and who feel as strongly about Maria Montessori as you do!)

Let's just say the whole weekend was filled with amazing energy.

But let's get to the purpose of this post! I wanted to share with you a new, creative way to work with the short bead stair in your classroom that I learned from my current lead.

It is a game that's played by two children and the purpose is to fill both 'butterfly wings' with a complete set of the short bead stair (1-10).

I drew a simple butterfly (with triangles as wings large enough to fit the complete bead stair)on 2 pieces of felt. Each child gets a butterfly and a bowl with 2 sets of bead stairs.

Taking turns, the child rolls two dice. The child then counts the dots on dice and places corresponding bead bars on their butterfly. 

They have the option to take the sum of the dice or split it up. For example if the child rolls a 2 and a 1, they can have a 2 and 1 bead bar or  a 3 bead bar. 

They continue the game until one child fills both butterfly wings. Towards the end of the game the child may roll a number but won't be able to place any bead bars. They just pass their turn and try again next time! 

You can alter this game to make it easier/more difficult depending on the age and capabilities of the child. We added a different set of dice (to make it more challenging for the kindergartners!)