Gather all your stuffed animals, dolls, and superheroes to make a parade! This activity is adapted from https://www.youcubed.org/.
Supplies: either print out the animal cards from the link above OR draw your own animal on cards OR get your favorite stuffed animals and animal figurines, dolls, superheroes. You will need some animal with one foot, for example worms or snails (Worms can be a piece of string or a pipe cleaner). What to do: 1) ask your child to count how many feet each animal/person has. It's ok if the answer is slightly off, maybe ask the child what his/her reasoning is for the number - or wait and see if he/she changes the number later on. If you have more than one child, let them discuss so they agree on the number. 2) invite the child to set up a parade with animals so that there are exactly 10 feet. 3) encourage your child to try different combination of animals so that they end up with exactly 10 feet.
- Try with a number different from 10.
- Throw in a 3-footed or 5-footed alien.
- More difficult: Ask them is they can do a 10-foot parade with exactly 3 animals. What about exactly 10 animals? What are all the possibilities? What about exactly 2 animals? What are all the possibilities?
How it went
I did not anticipate anthropomorphized animals. Minnie Mouse and Peppa Pig ended up having two feet despite being … well… a mouse and a pig. So meet our two-footed friends.
Here are a few parades:
When I asked about a parade with 10 animals, Bel immediately said “It’s easy” and started counted worms. I asked her why worms. No answer. I then whined and said the little pink bird wanted to be in the parade. She showed me by counting the bird’s feet (2) then added worms up to 11 feet and said “see, we have 11 with the bird”. I couldn’t get her to articulate her reasoning more. I guess the answer seemed obvious to her and she didn’t see why I insisted.