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How to teach a small child to count?

using the Doman's method

In the previous article, I explain how to learn reading with our toddlers using Doman’s method. Now It’s time to learn counting πŸ™‚

The key is to understand that we learn the best things that we can “touch”, understand, have close. I wanted to write that young children don’t like abstraction, but who likes them? Is it easier to understand the addition that you can see on buttons, candies, pebbles, or rather logarithms and functions, which unfortunately even in adulthood many of us have never understood, although probably we all learned them.

Learning mathematics using the Doman method is otherwise intuitive mathematics, based on teaching a child the concept of real quantity. It could be magic for you or me. At first, it was also difficult for me to believe what my daughter, who is less than a year old, does with mathematics. Remember, however, that we were taught to count on numbers, on something totally abstract, now we will teach a child to count on real numbers.

Show known

We need to focus on showing the facts. You will need cards again, this time with dots. Ultimately, you need 100 cards with dots, representing red dots, from one to one hundred. And one blank card at the end, because the child will quickly discover that since there are one and two, there must also be “nothing”. Then you show him “zero”.

According to the knowledge passed by Glenn Doman’s staff, a child after the age of two begins to lose the ability to see the actual amount of objects. The older he is, the more his brain works like ours. You probably will not notice the difference between 50 dots and 60, you would not indicate where 25 pebbles lie, and where 30.

As I have already mentioned, the brain grows rapidly at the beginning of our lives, and then its growth slows down a little each day. So start as soon as possible, preferably before the age of two. Ideally, if you start before the first.

So first we will teach the child to act on the real quantity, and only later, in the future, we will change it to abstract numbers, when in his head 99 will mean exactly 99 in the form of a real number, not a distant symbol. This will make performing activities always “childish” easy for him, in the end it will come down to just moving the dots (number) in memory.

What do you do to learn counting?
You have the cards again. This time with dots. And again you are introducing your child super attractive sessions. Remember that it’s fun, if the sessions are full of joy and laughter (and it depends mainly on you), your success is guaranteed.

Day 1

Let’s start with a simple, basic and easy-going schedule. On the first day, take the first 5 cards (with dots from 1 to 5) and show them to your child as if reading, 3 times a day. You show quickly and loudly say “one” – showing a card with one dot, “two” – with two dots, and so on. After the first day, remember to mix the cards so that the child learns the quantity, not the card order.

Day 2

On the second day you attach a second set, another 5 cards (with dots from 6 to 10). You already have two sets, you show them three times a day, and therefore 6 short sessions during the day. Your child not only learns to count, but also learns the next words – numerals. Remember to mix cards when you already have two sets, mix them also between sets.

Days 3 – 5

During the following days (days 3, 4, 5) you show your two sets three times a day, then presenting 6 sessions during the day.

Day 6

And finally, on the 6th day, you start exchanging cards exactly like when reading. It’s even easier here, you don’t have to take notes or remember which card is the oldest, you just exchange the one with the fewest dots. So on the sixth day you put down the card with 1 and 2 dots, and you add with 11 and 12 dots. You mix all ten cards and break down into two new sets, which you show to your child again 3 times a day, so together 6 short sessions.

The system is virtually identical all the time. You create sets, replace the oldest cards, show them as soon as possible and ready. You spend several minutes a day, and your child is already learning to count and read, and most importantly in a pleasant, painless way.

What can you do next?
The next stages of mathematics are:

  • actual quantity (on dots),
  • practice of equations (on dots),
  • solving tasks (on dots),
  • numbers (we enter numbers and numbers),
  • equations (on numbers).

When you show your little genius the first 20 cards, you can additionally enter equations. Start by adding, because it is the most intuitive. Your child adds from the beginning without knowing it is a mathematical operation. From the beginning, you have already noticed that every day you show him a card with one more dot (+1), he does not know just what to call this card.

So now you can add three more sessions, this time presenting three mathematical operations in each of them on numbers from 1 to 20. Over time, you can use the next numbers that the child learns.

You can start very simply: 3 + 4 = 7. For now we do not enter characters, it will come later. Just show your child the cards with dots one by one, saying: “three” (you show a card with 3 dots) add “four” (you show a card with 4 dots) equals “seven” (you show a card with 7 dots).

And it’s ready – you see how easy it is? If you follow this schedule, your child will have 9 fantastic math sessions each day that do not last more than 5 minutes together. However, this short time gives you new numbers, new words and new activities every day!