A few weeks ago, I wrote a quick post about my recent discovery of Anno books (here). Now that I have had a chance to look at several of them, I can definitely claim, loudly and clearly, how instructive and entertaining they are.
Anno’s Counting Book
The book starts with an empty landscape, with the numeral 0. The next page, numeral 1, includes a house, a cloud, a bridge. One child, one grown-up. On the next page, a second house can be seen, two trucks. And so one until the page with the numeral 12.
I have always enjoyed counting book, but I would put this one on the top of my list.
- The drawings are quite appealing to me, and to my children.
- Page after page, you can see the landscape changing with the seasons, filling up with all kind of items, full of little details that my kids love exploring.
- There is a neat connection, on the left, to the counting blocks children use at School (e.g. 3 blocks on the left, the drawing in the middle, and the numeral 3 on the right).
- Similar items are not always all together, providing support to discuss not only counting, but also adding. For instance, on page “4”, there are 3 birds on one corner, and one more on another corner. My son Tom, 3, would count them one by one, while Rosie, 6, would see it as adding 3 to 1.
I just wish I have found this book a few years ago, when I started reading books to Rosie or when I was teaching PK and K. A must have for young kids, in my opinion !
Ann’s Math Games and Anno’s Math Games II
These two books include a series of activities to strengthen mathematical skills.
Ann’s Math Games relates to comparing, adding/subtracting, ordering, and measuring. Ann’s Math Games II goes further, deeper. I found the chapter on Counting with circles quite interesting, showing that a group of children to be counted, can be represented from a complete drawing with all details, to something simpler, to a circle. A helpful transition to modeling and symbolics, that Rosie would have benefited from a few months ago (see here, first and second bullet point).
“Parents, Teachers and Other Older Readers” can also find additional information about the math concepts presented in the book at the end of each book.
Anno’s Magic Seeds and Anno’s Mysterious Multiplying Jar
These stories relate to more advanced concepts (multiplication and factorials). However, I like to give opportunities to my kids to informally explore math concepts on their own before learning them at School. Anno’s Magic Seeds is a fun way to do so with multiplication. I just need to remember to come back to it when Rosie is in 2nd grade !
To sum up: Anno books, I am hooked !