Inside a kindergarten classroom with Augustana students

Lucky Charmers

On Friday, it wasn’t hard to notice the kindergarteners were all looking forward to hearing the last school bell ring of the day, signaling the start of their Spring Break. To capitalize on this excitement in Mrs. Carmack’s class, we decided to keep the mood by designing a fun activity with the good old “Lucky Charms” cereal. Our kindergarteners absolutely loved this activity! Of course, the added incentive of eating a tasty treat at the close of the counting exercise might have contributed to the success of this activity

Jessi, Colleen, and myself had prepared a ½ cup of cereal in paper cups for each of our kindergarteners and their goal was to sort the cereal pieces (the marshmallow pieces) by shapes. For instance, the students had to separate the hearts, pots of gold, St. Patrick Day hats, rainbows, etc into different piles. Then, the students had to write down the number of shapes they had in each pile. After the kindergarteners were done completing this task, they then had to figure out which cereal piece pile had the highest number and draw a picture. Next, they had to decide which cereal piece pile had they least number of pieces, and also draw a picture of this. Their final task was to do some simple addition problems by adding different cereal piles together. So, for example, how many total heart pieces and star pieces did they have altogether? When the kindergarteners were done filling out this worksheet they were rewarded by finally eating their lucky charms. But, they had one more task to complete, which included graphing the cereal piece shapes. The purpose of this activity was to have our students learn to recognize small number groups, how to add two number groups together, as well as participate in a fun activity.

The kindergarteners did really well with the entire activity. After having a discussion of the activities, we came to a conclusion that the kindergarteners were still having problems adding two different numbers together. In my group, the students would understand that they were to count the two different piles, but they did not grasp the concept that they were to add the two numbers together, or continue counting on to their other pile of cereal. This was the activity where the kindergarteners needed most guidance. I was quite impressed to see the kindergartners in my group comprehending how to graph their cereal shapes. In other words, they successfully associated the idea that if they had five heart cereal pieces, they then needed to color in five corresponding boxes on the graph.

Overall, we were all quite pleased with the “Lucky Charmers” activities, and we think all of the kindergarteners enjoyed the activity as well. It was also fun to hear their responses about what they thought St. Patrick’s day was all about. Some had cute responses such as, “It’s when you get lucky for the day!” Although Mrs. Carmack, Jessi, Colleen and myself will all be looking forward to a relaxing two week Spring Break, we know we will also miss our little kindergarteners! But don’t be a stranger, we will soon be back to blogging our new spring math adventures in just two weeks! Until then, enjoy catching up by reading some of our past blogs!

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