Tuesday, November 11, 2014

The Button Box

Since we have been doing a lot of sewing and quilting projects around here, I thought that I would read The Button Box by Margarette S. Reid as part of our morning work. In the past, I have used this book as a way to discuss attributes and classification with my students; however, that was not my intention with the reading.

But then, First Sprout got unexpectedly excited about studying buttons.

This book is amazing, and I highly recommend it!
One of the great things about homeschooling is that I can follow these leads where they take us. So, I pulled out my jar of buttons, an old cookie tray, and a magnifying glass. As First Sprout was describing the various buttons, I introduced the term attribute, and we made a list of various attributes that might apply to our buttons (the book was a big help here).

It made a lot sense to start sorting the buttons based on their attributes. First Sprout was especially interested in the materials of the buttons, so we started there. I stuck some Post-It Notes on a large piece of construction paper so that we could record the data on our different groupings.

As First Sprout says, "we are science-ing the buttons!"

All of our hard word in spelling is paying off here.

Then we decided to try sorting a different way to see what would happen. First Sprout chose to sort by color, which made for some really beautiful groupings. We flipped the construction paper over and used a new set of Post-It Notes to record our data there as well.

Sorting buttons by color was really visually stunning.

Recording our data on sorting buttons by color.

Since this activity turned into such a great success (and I have two more sprouts showing interest in the buttons), I decided to create an activity pack for my Teachers Pay Teachers store called Attributes, Buttons, & Counting... Oh My! It is full of good stuff like attribute charts, sorting mats, and button graphs. We are taking the opportunity to try out our new goodies during the week, and I am adding pictures of the activity pack in use:

Second Sprout uses an attribute mat to sort buttons by color.

First Sprout made an awesome pictograph after sorting buttons by the number of holes.

Until next time, Happy Learning!

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