Nature, seen through the eyes of a mathematician, reveals amazing structures, patterns and numbers. What seems chaotic and random to untrained eyes is breathtaking order, and beauty to those who have eyes to see.
Please take a few minutes to watch this amazing video by Spanish filmmaker Cristobal Vila.
We can help children develop the ability to recognize patterns in nature, and utilize mathematical thinking to give meaning to apparent chaos. Simple hands-on learning materials give direct access to a world that can be structured by numbers. There is no word, nor explanation needed to build a bridge to understanding. The materials reveal concepts directly.
For example: This is a Montessori material showing the decimal system: On top of the big green 1,000,000 cube (which consists of a million imaginary cubes), you see the red 100,000 board (which consists of hundred thousand imaginary cubes), the blue 10,000 cubes stick in the back, the green 1,000 cubes cube, the red 100 cubes board, and -invisible on this photo- the blue 10 cubes stick, and the tiny green single cube.
This material is real, straightforward, and “first-hand information”. Thus, misunderstandings and confusion is minimized.
Let math and science become useful tools in our children’s tool-boxes, instead of confusing obstacles toward comprehending their immediate environment. Let’s provide hands-on learning materials, and simplify math lessons for children