## Using Worksheets

Incorporating Pre-K math worksheets into lesson plans is not a new idea. Long before copiers were readily available for the classroom teacher’s printing needs, worksheets made their way into lesson plans. While independent work has been frowned upon by some sections of the learning community, reinforcement of skills is not a concept easily parted with. Use the downloadable worksheets at the end of this article for practice, review and remediation when needed. Avoid using them as an initial teaching tool. Worksheets can also work as homework for the student struggling with a concept in class.

## Shape Books

The most basic geometry comes in the form of shapes. The youngest of learners begin learning triangles, squares and circles long before they can name the object. The use of Pre-K math worksheets, in conjunction with beginning math skills lessons on shapes, can be used to create a shape book for students to keep long after class is over.

Prepare the books one sheet at a time as each shape is discussed. The lesson might include drawing a singular square on a whiteboard and asking for the name of the object. The sides are counted and questions are posed as to what things are square shaped. Students will answer with simple objects such as boxes or houses. Progress the lesson by adding additional squares to the whiteboard along with a circle and a triangle. Questions are posed for same and different. The class counts how many squares are present and how many other shapes they see. At this point, the students are ready to work on their shape book, (see Media section on page 2).

Each page of the shape book asks the students to trace the shape and then count the number of given shapes that are to the right of the page. A specific direction is then given such as coloring one or more of the given shapes. All directions should be read out loud before the students begin and repeated several times during the work time. Each page is collected and placed in a folder or three-hole punch binder. The book builds as each of the downloadable worksheets is completed.

Place the books in a designated place with each students name prominently on the front. Let the students decorate the books to give them a personal feel. When the book is complete, send the book home as a keepsake.

The Pre-K math worksheets for the shape book are appropriate for age three without individual assistance. For older students, the book works as a remediation tool or as review material.

## Pattern Recognition

Early math includes the concept of pattern recognition. Students see patterns in the world around them in alternating letters on signs, beads on necklaces or bracelets, and other familiar items in their environment.

A lesson pattern begins with objects familiar to the students. Candy bracelets with a set pattern of colors works well. Give each student a candy piece of jewelry and begin discussing the colors. Have the students announce the pattern on their piece. The answers will be simple such as "yellow, pink, orange, yellow, pink, orange". As the students consume their math project, move to the whiteboard and begin to draw shape patterns. Discuss the shape patterns drawn and begin to ask the students what shape would come next, reminding them of how the color pattern repeated itself on the bracelets. Give multiple examples and give every student a chance to answer.

Reinforce the lesson with downloadable worksheets for patterning. These worksheets give beginners the option of which shape comes next without need for drawing, (see Media section below).

## Proportion

Beginning math skills include the recognition of bigger verses smaller. Children quickly pick up on the concept when faced with items such as pieces of birthday cake or candy.

This skill is one very specific to visual learning. Hold up common objects such as a large teddy bear and a small toy car. Ask which one is larger. Hold up a second set of common items and this time ask which is smaller. With set of items, bring the sizes of the two objects closer together. For example, use a pencil and a crayon. Reinforce the skill with Pre-K math worksheets, (see Media section below).

Discuss each of the items on the worksheet and do the first one together as a group. If some students appear to be struggling with the concept, do the entire worksheet as a group lesson.

This early math lesson is appropriate for students as young as two. The ability to work independently needs to be determined prior to offering the worksheets.

## Pulling it all Together

In the classroom, teachers are faced with all types of learners. Incorporating Pre-K math worksheets into oral and visual lessons assists the teacher with fulfilling the needs of all the students.

## Media

Mini Shape Book – TLS Books, Free worksheets

Pattern Worksheets – Kids Zone Printable Worksheets

Big and Small Worksheets – Kids Learning Station