Numicon is a math learning system that uses colorful shapes to represent numbers and help children visualize mathematical concepts. The system is based on the principle that all children are born with an innate understanding of numbers, which can be developed through concrete, visual experiences.
Numicon games and activities provide a fun and effective way for children to explore mathematical concepts such as quantity, order, and equivalence. They also help to develop important problem-solving and critical thinking skills. With Numicon, learning math can be an enjoyable and rewarding experience for both children and adults.
Therefore, in this post, we will discuss the various types of numicon games and activities to help your child ace mathematics like no other. Read more below.
Numicon: Helping children see the connection between numbers
Numicon is an approach to teaching math that uses concrete objects to help children visualize numbers and understand the relationships between them. Originally developed in the UK, Numicon has been researched to see whether or not it has some substantial advantages for little learners.
A recent study found that Numicon-based instruction led to significant gains in numeracy among first-grade students. It also stated that Numicon was particularly effective in helping children who struggled with math or suffered some form of learning disability. Numicon works on the belief and notion that the concrete nature of the materials used in it will help children in connecting numbers with their real-world counterparts.
In addition, Numicon provides a visual representation of numbers that can be helpful for children who have difficulty understanding abstract concepts. Numicon shapes help children learn about number relationships by showing how various numbers are related. For example, when kids assemble the numicon shapes, they will learn to determine that 6 is twice as big and 9 is thrice as big as 3. Numicon is proving to be an effective tool for helping children to understand the connection between numbers.
Numicon activities to teach the essence of number sense
1. Make a Numicon mobile
Get creative and make a mobile out of Numicon shapes! All you need is some string, a few clothespins, and your Numicon shapes.
- Tie the string to the clothespins and clip the Numicon shapes onto the string.
- Hang your mobile from the ceiling or a doorway and enjoy your creative handwork! Kids will learn to recognize and identify Numicon shapes through this art and craft activity.
- They would understand color coding even better and see how the shapes can be combined to make other patterns.
It is a fun everyday activity that can be enjoyed with friends, family, or in the classroom.
2. Play a matching game
This is a great way for kids to learn about Numicon shapes and colors.
- Simply lay out all of the Numicon shapes in a row.
- Then, have your child match each shape with its corresponding color.
- If you want to make the game more challenging, you can also have them match the shapes by their size. For example, they would need to match the small circle with the large square.
This activity is perfect for young learners who are just starting to learn about shapes and colors. Adding Numicon to it, kids will tend to grasp the concept quickly and have more fun in the process!
3. Create a shape collage
This is another easy and handy activity for kids to teach about Numicon.
- In this activity, they can use construction paper or cardstock and have your child create a collage of different Numicon shapes.
- Then, they can either glue or tape the shapes down onto the paper.
- Once they finish, they can hang their artwork on the fridge or in their room.
This collage activity helps kids identify Numicon shapes and colors and fine-tune their motor skills.
4. Play catch with Numicon
This fun activity can be done by practicing counting and number recognition. All you need is one Numicon shape for each player.
- One player begins by throwing their shape up in the air and catching it.
- As they catch the shape, they need to call out the number that is printed on it.
- Then, the next player throws their shape up and calls out the number as well.
- The game continues until all of the players have had a turn.
- The one who gets it wrong disqualifies.
This is a very facile but effective activity that makes kids move, learn and play throughout. It enhances motor skills and doubles cognitive, sensory, and physical power.
5. Play a game of Numicon hopscotch
This is a fun-outdoor activity-based learning wherein kids get through moving while practicing those math skills!
- Using chalk, draw a hopscotch grid on the ground.
- Label each square with a Numicon shape. Players take turns throwing a marker into the first square.
- They then hop on one foot through the squares, following the order of the Numicon shapes.
- If they land on a square with the same shape as their marker, they can pick up their marker and continue hopping.
- Their turn is over if they land on a square with a different shape.
- The first player to reach the end of the hopscotch grid is the winner!
This activity helps kids to identify Numicon shapes via movements, some jumping, and some competitive behavior.
6. Build a Numicon tower
This is a simple activity that helps kids to recognize patterns and develop their fine motor skills.
- Using Numicon shapes, have your child build the tallest tower possible.
- They can start with a simple pattern, such as two small circles, followed by one large square.
- As they build their towers higher, they can add more complex patterns. This activity can be done individually or in groups.
It’s fun for kids to learn about Numicon shapes while working on their problem-solving and cooperative skills. It also enhances their creativity making them real-world ready.
7. Make a Numicon Wind Chime
This activity is perfect for kids who enjoy being creative and working with their hands.
- Using Numicon shapes, have your child create a wind chime.
- They can use any materials they like, such as string, ribbon, or yarn.
- Once they have created their wind chimes, using cardboard cutting shapes, they can glue small bells at the end of each shape.
- Then, kids can hang them up outside and enjoy the sound of the Numicon shapes clinking together in the wind.
This activity helps kids to identify Numicon shapes and colors, and it also allows them to be creative and use their imagination. Parents are bound to feel double happy and proud while entering home and seeing the wind chime made with a learning aspect.
8. Play a game of Numicon I Spy
I Spy is a famous PBS activity loved by the masses. Over the years, the activity has been transformed and modified into various forms. It is a fun activity that can be done indoors or outdoors.
- Using Numicon shapes, have your child hide one shape somewhere in the room or yard.
- The other player then has to find the shape by using clues given by the first player. For example, if the shape is a square, the first player might say, “I spy something that is flat and has four sides.”
This activity helps kids identify Numicon shapes and colors and allows them to practice their problem-solving skills through logical thinking and adept promptness.
Numicon is a great way to help kids learn about numbers, and shapes, and Have fun. They can be done at the ease of their home, or school, or can be played indoors or outdoors. We hope that kids will enjoy working around them to channel their numicon activity with double pace and better understand numbers, shapes, and colors while developing their fine motor skills and problem-solving skills. So get creative and have fun with Numicon.
- Nye, J, Buckley, S, and Bird, G. (2005) Evaluating the Numicon system as a tool for teaching number skills to children with Down syndrome. Down Syndrome News and Update, 5(1), 2-13. doi:10.3104/updates.352