To be honest, though, this post is a bit of a placeholder because I know I won't be able to resist coming back to it later and expanding on it.
One of my goals for professional development in January is to learn more about the Mortensen math materials, since they are the newest math material I own. I keep finding articles and videos that I want to take the time to absorb. These are all FREE resources. I hope you find them interesting... and if you find more links that should be included on this list, please share!
I know it's a plastic material (although that's a blessing in the disinfect-me time of COVID) and Waldorf uses lovely glass gems and Montessori uses lovely wood materials, but there are some real advantages to Mortensen, especially when it comes to algebra. The basic idea is that there is no must-do order of concepts... as long as the presentation is consistent among them (which it is), you can follow the children's lead and do whatever is interesting for them. A child simply needs to be able to count to 9, tell if two things are different, and identify a square and a rectangle. It's pretty fascinating stuff!
Reconceptualizing Fraction Multiplication and Division
* in Mortensen math, the problem is always built as a rectangle *
1/2 x 1/3
How much (area) is 1/2 times 1/3? It is an area 1/2 over and 1/3 up.
see this in a super-short video with the fraction manipulatives
2/3 ÷ 1/2
How many times can you count 1/2 from 2/3?
Algebra Visualization Book 5
Okay, so that's the mind-bending "wait a minute, I never learned it this way" stuff!! How do you get kids there?
an awesome overview in 57 minutes and 4 seconds
my colleague, Ms. Denise, traveled all the way to Hawai'i to learn from him!
Introducing the blocks and the operations
One plus 9 is another kind
Adding to 100
love the use of the empty tray as part of these math lessons!
Supremely Simple Subtraction
which Crewton will cheerfully send to you for free as a PDF
Super Simple Subtraction
immediately introducing subtraction as adding a negative number! and easily showing how subtraction is finding the "difference" between two numbers
basic operations with bigger numbers
Finding equivalent fractions
a really interesting way to find equivalent fractions as well as common denominators! does NOT require a special fraction material!
Addition & subtraction of fractions with unlike denonminators
Multiplication & division of fractions
Moving easily from percentages to fractions to algebra... and beyond!
- Fractions / Decimals / Percentages (PDF)
nice article and overview, color photos, 10 pages, free PDF
Squares and cubes
with Montessori bead chains, the beads are wired together so they will stay in place and balance but the rectangular blocks makes it easier
Of course, I will continue to add links to articles & videos as I find them. And, here are all of the videos on Crewton Ramone's Youtube channel.
The other new resource which I just purchased, and which won't arrive on my doorstep until Sunday so I'll update this then, is The Deep Well of Time: The Transformative Power of Storytelling in the Classroom by Michael Dorer.
In Montessori, just like in Waldorf, teachers are supposed to teach through stories which they learn by heart and tell to their class. This not only makes the content enlivened, because storytelling is such a personal experience, it makes it more memorable! I just had a wonderful Zoom meeting with another former Montessori teacher who has become a Waldorf teacher, and is looking for places of overlap and connection, and she shared the title of this book with me. She said it was particularly wonderful for Geometry.
Even if you're not a fan of Amazon, I suggest clicking on the link I've given below and then clicking on "Look Inside" to see the table of contents and the full list of stories included.
This post contains affiliate links to materials I truly use for homeschooling. Qualifying purchases provide me with revenue. Thank you for your support!