One, Two, One Thousand. . .
Some might ask, “Why is this child counting to 1000?” The answer is rather simple. “Because he wants to.” Children of this age can often be heard proudly announcing, “I can count to 100.” Or, “I can count to 1000”. Kindergarteners are mastering their understanding of numbers and quantity.
While many might boast that they can count to 100, many still don’t understand that seventy is greater than thirty. This is where the number chain comes in. Children are able to physically count each bead on their way to 100 or 1000. The child in these pictures is counting each group of ten, labeling it, and working his way to 1000. The child still needs some help when transitioning between the groups of 100 but with continued practice he will get it! The driving force here is that the child wants to do it! He wants to be able to count to 1000 all by himself.
This math material was available in the classroom and the child took it from the shelf of his own volition and started in on it. While looking in from the outside, it might appear that the child is in over his head, this isn’t a work that he will master the first time he does it, but one he will do again and again and each time he does it he will internalize more and more about our number system and will make more and more connections about patterns in numbers and physical quantities.