Your Kids Will Never Know It’s Math

Summer is right around the corner and kids are already squirming in their desks, ready to leave learning behind. But you can keep that growing brain engaged, even after the final school bell rings. Invite your child to put on “math goggles” for all the activities in Robin A. Ward’s book Math + Art = Fun. Together, you and your wiggly one will learn about artists around the world, recreate famous paintings and sculptures, and keep those math concepts fresh.

Here’s an example of what mathematical magic can happen when you look at art with “math goggles” on.

What you need
Hans (Jean) Arp, a German-French sculptor, painter, and poet, lived from 1886-1966. He was a pioneer of abstract art and became famous for his “chance collages.” As your child recreates Arp’s masterpieces with three easy-to-find tools: a glue stick, white cardstock (8.5” x 11.0”), and plenty of multi-colored squares (1.5” x 1.5”), you’ll introduce the concept of probability.


What to do
Spread the glue over the cardstock and drop the colored squares – be sure not to move them from where they land! Do you think Hans was thinking of probability and chance when he made his collages?


What they learn
With younger children, have a simple discussion using probability terms. Ask if it is likely to be hot today or if it is impossible for it to snow. You can also experiment with colorful spinners!

With older children, challenge them to think in probabilities. Ask for an example of when an event has a 0% chance of occurring, a 50% chance, or a 100% chance. Use a deck of cards, dice, or flip a coin to ask more difficult probability questions.

What’s the chance of math being fun? Check out this great collection of information and activities and you’ll get just the right answer.

Summer = fun, but Math + Art = Fun, too!

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