See a Sample Lesson Plan Below
What is First Math Plus?  
 
First Math Plus is a school readiness program that uses productive play to develop an understanding of math symbols and concepts.  It supports students throughout the learning cycle by building an educational tool-kit of skills to help them see success, gain confidence and thrive - not only in the public school environment, but also in life. It does this with a unique four-step process where children are:
Ø       Playing to Play,
Ø       Playing to Learn,
Ø       Learning to Play, and
Ø       Learning to Learn
 

Sample Lesson Plan:
Chapter 1:  How Many Are There? 
Lesson 1: Playing To Play:  Introducing Counting
Ø      Open:  Connect to previous learning.
F     Chant the numbers from 1 to 10 with students.  Hold up your two fists and extend fingers as you count.
F     Ask students what they know about counting, numbers and math? 
F     Accept all appropriate answers.  Praise whenever possible. 
Ø      Explain:  Tell students that they are going to learn more about counting and about some special tools they will be using to count and to do math.
Note:  If students are curious where the word "math" comes, you can explain that it is short for "mathematics." Mathematics comes from the Greek words máthēma (which means "science, knowledge, or learning") and mathēmatikós (which means "fond of learning").  As the Greeks started writing about learning and numbers, they needed a name to call what they were talking about, so they created the word mathematics – which we shorten to math.
F     Emphasize that these are tools not toys.  Tools must be treated gently and with respect. 
Ø      Explore:  Take the Dominaides and dominoes out of their cases very carefully. 
F     Explain again that these are special tools not toys, and that they must be treated very gently. 
F     Let the children explore these new tools.  As the group discusses the tools, you should use their names several times to reinforce what they are called.
▪         The Dominoes.
▪         The Dominaide.
F     Encourage the students to tell you all about what they see.
F     Accept all appropriate responses.  Praise when possible. (see Appendix B) 
F     Some possible prompts to encourage students to talk might be:
▪         What are these?
▪         Can you describe these things? 
▪         What are they called?
▪         If it doesn’t have a name that you know what would you call it?
▪         Can you see any patterns?
▪         Do you see any doubles? (an example is the 2-2 domino)
▪         Do you see any blanks? (an example is the 0-0 domino)
▪         What do you see on them?
▪         What do they feel like?
▪         How are they different from each other?
▪         How are they the same?
▪         Why is there a raised brass bump in the middle of the face?
▪         Which one is your favorite?  Why?
▪         Which is heavier the Dominaide, or a domino?
▪         Does the Dominaide have corners?  Can you point to one?
▪         Do the dominoes have corners?  Can you point to one?
▪         What else do you know that has corners?
▪         Does the Dominaide have sides?  Can you point to one?
▪         Are all the sides the same?  What is different about them?
▪         Do the dominoes have sides?  Can you point to one?
▪         Are all the sides the same?  What is different about them?
▪         Look at the Dominaide and a domino.  Which one is skinnier/fatter?
▪         If you compare the Dominaide to your finger which one is bigger/littler? (have them also compare their finger to a domino)
▪         Would you like to hold the Dominaide on a hot day?  Why?
▪         Would you like to hold a domino on a hot day?  Why?
▪         Is the Dominaide like something that you've seen before? Why? 
▪         Why do you think someone invented dominoes?
▪         Why do you think someone invented the Dominaide?
▪         What else could you use these tools for?  Can you describe how you would use them for that?
▪         What do we call this mirrored thing?
Ø      Demonstrate:  Tell students that it is your turn to show them what to do, when you finish it will be their turn. 
F     Show students how the dominoes and the Dominaide work.
F     Note the face of the domino with the dots, the line down the middle of the face, how you can look at the dots on just one side of the face (cover the other side with your fingers), or the other side, and the smooth back of the domino.
F     Have students place the Dominaide so that the open side is facing the student. 
▪         Note how a domino can sit on the Plexiglas ledge so that the bottom mirror reflects the face of the domino.  Have students place a domino on the Dominaide in this fashion so only they can see the face of the domino in the mirror.   The back of the domino is toward the others in the group.
▪         Now have the students place a domino on the Dominaide so that everyone in the group can see the face of the domino and only the back of the domino reflects in the mirror.
Ø      Practice:  Have students take turns choosing a domino from the pile.
F     Have students put a domino on a Dominaide so everyone can see it. 
F     Have students put a domino on a Dominaide so ONLY they can see it reflected in the mirror. 
F     Praise student’s efforts, and demonstrate/repeat as needed.
Ø      Close: Explain that these tools will help students learn to count and do math. 
F     Tell them they have some “homework.”  Explain that homework is work they need to do before they have another math lesson. 
F     For homework, challenge students to teach someone what they learned about dominoes (The ‘someone’ they teach can be a mom, dad, sibling, aunt, uncle, grandparent, care-giver, classmate or you).
F     Let students play with the dominoes and Dominaides for a few minutes. 
F     Observe and assist only as needed.  Take notes to document what you see.
F     Demonstrate to students how to put the tools away carefully, and then let them finish putting them away.
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