Legos: The Building Blocks of Math
Believe it or not, having a bunch of Legos all of the floor could be a way to help your younger child develop important math skills. These colorful building blocks can help build your child’s confidence in math at an early age. Here are great ways to use Lego’s to foster a love for math in your young child:
- Counting! For the very young child, simply counting these blocks in a great way to introduce them to the numbers they will be using for the rest of their lives.
- Recognizing patterns- Use the various coloured blocks to help your child recognize patterns in sequence.
- Place Value- Have your child make a stack of Legos that is 10 bricks high. Have him/her make a few of these stacks and also have them set aside a handful of loose Lego bricks. Use the stacks to represent the “tens” and the loose bricks to represent the “ones” when learning place value.
- By pulling Legos out of a bag, your child can collect data of how many Legos of each color there are and use that information to plot data on a graph.
- By simply placing Legos on graph paper and having the student trace around the Lego, you can help the student beginning to understand the concepts of area and perimeter. By counting the number of squares on the graph paper that the Lego occupied, the student can begin to visualize the area taken up by an object.
- One creative way to explore the concept of estimation AND measurement is by playing a game of “How many Legos does it weigh?” Tie two pieces of string to a hanger and hang and the hanger on a doorknob. Make a list of small, common household objects that you will be measuring. Tie the small object (your child’s shoe, a stuffed animal, a water bottle) to one of the strings and tie a Lego “base” to the other string. The base will be used to build upon. Have your child guess how many Legos he/she will have to build onto the Lego base in order to equalize the weight of the object on the other side of the hanger. This is a fun way for your child to use estimation and trial and error to have fun with math!
Have fun experimenting with different ways to use these fun, colourful and kid-friendly blocks to introduce your child to new math concepts.
Just try not to step on them when you’re done.