Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Nerf Gun - An Unexpected Learning Tool

Hunter loves his nerf gun. He got it for Christmas (actually, two) and after noticing his obsession with it, the other day I came up with a game to introduce the multiplication table (not multiplication itself, just that poster of his that has been hanging in his room for months now).

I got him all worked up and excited about it, then showed him the game - shoot, and then pretty much see what you got.

We talked about columns and rows, and how to find the factors of the product, or answer, you landed on. I showed him how to trace his hand up the column and across the row to find the factors, and then we said the whole equation - for example, if we landed on 63 he would trace up to 9 and across to 7 and then say the whole equation: 7 times 9 equals 63, or vice versa (9 times 7 equals 63).

We did a few rounds and then put it away [always stop before your child wants to stop]. It was fun, and he loved it. I am also thinking about using the same concept for some of our many other posters, such as the periodic table of the elements or the parts of speech poster. We will see, whatever peaks his interest.

"And I will shoot three arrows on the side thereof, as though I shot at a mark."
1 Samuel 20:20

Hunter is 4 years, 9 months old