Inside a kindergarten classroom with Augustana students

The Light Bulb goes on…

This week during my work with the kindergartners we worked with the number sense iPad apps that Randy made. For most of the kids I worked with the count sort app, which is an app that lets the students practice their counting by dragging the shape to the side and counting out loud. The other app I used was the What’s Hiding? app. In this app it starts out by showing the student a number of chips, the student then counts-each time they touch one of the chips it turns the color blue, then an orange square hides all the chips and drops some or all the chips out. The student has to figure out how many chips are still hiding behind the square. To us adults, this seems like a very simple concept, but I found a lot of the students I worked with really struggled with this.

While I worked with one particular student on the two apps. I started with the count sort app and he seemed to really struggle. As he would count the chips he would often look at me for help after reaching the number 4. Sometimes he would remember 5 comes next, but then forget 6-10. We kept working at it and his counting got a little better, but as I began to wonder if I should move on to the What’s Hiding? game. I wasn’t sure he was quite ready for it, but he started to get a little antsy as most kindergartner’s do. As we moved on to the What’s Hiding? I opened up the app and began to give the student the most thorough explanation I could. As he began to try it on his own the first few times he was a little confused. He couldn’t quite understand that there were still some chips hiding or that the answer was not the number of chips that appeared once the square covered the others. After a couple rounds of me helping him all of a sudden I saw the light bulb go on in his head. He finally began to figure out that after he counted the chips and there was 4 and only 2 came out that 2 were still hiding. It was such a great teaching experience to see him finally get it after a few rounds of failure. It was especially great to see the cute smile of accomplishment on his face as realized he could do it and that he figured it out!

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