Your children have been indirectly prepared for the world of mathematics with the work they have been doing all this time with the Practical Life and Sensorial Activities. They have acquired important skills which will serve them well when they enter the world of numbers. They are now much more in control of their movement, better able to make choices, to classify objects to compare and make judgements, to observe, to focus and concentrate on a piece of work, and to persist with something that interests them. Generally, they are much more active and independent in class. They are now ready to enter the world of maths!
By using the specifically designed Montessori math material, children discover the world of numbers and they gradually come to acquire ‘the mathematical language’. The materials provide children with endless possibilites. They can count until 1000 using a chain which has a thousand golden beads! They can count in a linear fashion (1,2,3,…) but they can also count in groups of numbers (4, 8, 12…) preparing them for their multiplication tables later. They even work with the decimal system and in a very concrete way they can see how 10 differs from 100 and how 100 differs from 1000. Working either on their own, or in groups, they practice using the four operations and they begin to recognise in their work repetitions, patterns and laws. They really enjoy working with numbers, and whilst doing so they are building their reasoning minds.