New Review Tuesday: Math-Themed Picture Books
These new picture books are just the thing for dropping into your math lessons.
The Lion's Share: A Tale of Halving Cake and Eating It Too, written and illustrated by Matthew McElligott, takes a classic thought problem and gives it a kid-friendly twist: What happens when you keep cutting something in half? In Ant's case, it means that she's left with a measly crumb of cake to split with the king. The story flips on itself when Ant decides to bake another cake, and each animal in succession clamors to make twice as many! A great choice for talking about halving, doubling, and multiples. You'll want to retell the story during your own snacktime, too—try continuously halving a large piece of fruit, such as a cantaloupe or other melon. Then double with grapes or raisins! Best for grades 1–3.
Math Attack, by Joan Horton and illustrated by Kyrsten Brooker, doesn't release until later next month, but keep an eye out for it at your local bookstore. It's a fun, rhyming read aloud about what happens when numbers escape out of a girl's head and take over the town. The multiplication theme makes it a good pick for introducing the times tables, as well as addressing any anxiety kids might have about the harder math they encounter as they get older. Best for grades 2–4.
I will always remember my first grade teacher reading David Schwartz's and Steven Kellogg's How Much Is A Million? to our class. What are your favorite math picture books?