Montessori used the number rods for counting After counting is mastered, numbers are introduced with the 3 period lesson. Lastly, matching the numbers and matching number rod finishes the lesson.

Counting is a great math readiness skill. You can use this free Pink Tower and Counting Printout to teach counting and number recognition. This lesson is an adaptation of the Montessori pink tower.

First sort the cards from smallest to largest, count the cards from one to ten, and finally teach the number symbols using the 3 period lesson. For younger children use the first three cards and add more gradually.

This little video is amazing. Why do we remember video games from our childhood and not math from our textbooks? Video games provide patterns that our brains use to gather information. We repeat the process and push the boundaries while playing video games. Linear learning from text books is soon forgotten when we don't understand the patterns and use the lowest form of learning, memorization. Montessori used hands-on materials for math that provided patterns for learning. I wonder if she would have considered video learning games?

It is always difficult to know what math activities are appropriate for your child. Here are some links with math skills for different ages and various fun lessons to do at home.

I used to spend hours with my mother's cooking school scale. It was a great way to figure out what items weighed the same, regardless of their size and shape.

I like this wooden scale. You could use other small items to weigh, such as coins or buttons. Make the scales balance and it is the first step in doing an algebra equation.

Fraction tiles are manipulatives that help your child understand fractions. Each tile represents a unit fraction. The tiles show how many parts (fractions) make the whole unit. You can make these tiles with paper or small ceramic tiles.

I found a great book at the local library, Making Fractionswith easy-to-make projects for fun math games. It includes a great idea for making a fraction wall. There are games for ratios, percentages and decimals.