# 5 Ways to Get Moving with Math

My kids wiggle.  They’re just wiggly.  Even at nearly 10, Baloo wiggles.  They just want to be moving!  So I figure I can fight it and somehow force them to be still (which would be impossible) or I can work with it.

Certain subjects get more wiggles than others and math tends to be a wiggly subject.  Especially when it gets tough.  So we like to move with math.  It gets out their energy, they’re learning, and I’m not pulling out my hair in wiggly frustrations.

The thing about moving with math is that it takes a bit of prep and they typically don’t do the activity for a long time.  So I have a tendency to save our wiggly math movement activities until absolutely necessary.  We just have the ideas and tools on hand for when we need them!

## Moving with Math

1.  Hopscotch/jumping.  A bit of chalk and a sidewalk is an open canvas for some math movement.  We like to make hopscotch games and run with it.  We did a shamrock hopscotch for St. Patricks Day.  Skip counting is great for hopscotch but you can do so much.  Number recognition for small kids.  Addition for slightly bigger ones (you’re on 3 and you rolled a 4, what is 3+4?  Go to number 7!).  But hopscotch isn’t necessary, you can also just write numbers all over and jump to them.  Practice multiple facts – write the product on the ground and roll 2 dice!
2. Scavenger hunts.  This could go one of two ways.   Type 1: You set out whatever it is you want found.  Perhaps the numbers to make a fact family or certain shapes.  Type 2:  Just go on a hike/walk and find things! Collect rocks and pinecones.  Then you could graph the results. Sorting would be good too.
3. Workout Math.  We have done this to practice spelling as well and it works fantastically.  Do sit ups, push ups, jumping jacks, etc.  Some simple work out and practice your facts.  Younger kids can simply count, older kids can practice multiplication facts (1×1 is 1, 1×2 is 2, etc for each count).  Repetition in memorizing facts is key.
4. Races/relays/cooperative games.  We like to make overly complicated games that involve running (or biking, scooting, something active).  And since we aren’t competitive, these usually involve racing yourself or cooperative play.  So am example would be…one person draws a math fact out of a bucket, runs down to the other side of the yard, finds the answer to their math problem, and runs back.  This process continues until all the facts are done.  We will take score to compare to the next time.  This is great because you can also have kids of all levels working together.  Have 3 different buckets – one with number sense, one addition, one multiplication.
5. Think BIG.  Take any game or activity and make it on a huge scale.  Like the life size number line where they walk along the numbers.  Instead of using tiny manipulatives, make big ones!  Instead of writing numbers on pieces of paper, act them out with your body!

## Great Gross Motor Ideas from Others

This is day 5 of my 10 day series on Making Math Fun.  Don’t miss the rest of the topics!