In my building I work in an area called “The Primary Pod”. This means that we have two clusters of 4 classrooms with no walls between them. We have rolling cubbies between them, shelves, crates, but no walls.
Can you imagine teaching without walls? It’s not easy to keep my small groups focused! Now, because we have no walls, I can hear every little thing that happens next door which includes a whole lot of singing about numbers, letters and sounds. And let me tell you, those kinders know their numbers, letters and sounds inside out and upside down. Songs really helped them to solidify these concepts.
One favorite of the class next door is “5 Little Ducks”. You know the one. The mother starts with 5 ducks but one by one they swim away reinforcing the concept of “one less” for numbers for 5 down to 0. No worries though, at the end of the song ALL of the little ducks come back 🙂
It got me thinking that there are tons of songs and poems that count up and count back reinforcing the add on and take away properties of addition and subtraction but not so many songs about the part part whole relationship of addition and subtraction.
So I wrote one 🙂
Perhaps I was inspired by the 5 Little Ducks but this song is called the 10 Penguins and is to the tune of “Little White Duck”. It looks like there are a lot of words but it’s really just the one verse repeated with different numbers!
As you sing, I would create an anchor chart and move the penguins as each moves into the pool so the students can see and keep track of the number of penguins on the ice and in the pool as the song progresses. I would also have my students hold out their hands to show the two parts and clap them together as they get to the end of the verse when they say “__ and __ makes 10!”. After singing the song a few times I may even ask students to show a number bond or a number sentence that demonstrates what is happening in the song.
So there you have it, a song, some movement and visual cues all wrapped into one quick and easy activity! Click HERE to grab a copy of the song and lyrics to use with your kids!