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Stuart J. Murphy
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In "Rabbit's Pajama Party, the math concept presented is time sequencing. Understanding what comes first, what comes next, what happens after that, and what happens last is important in the development of a child's understanding of mathematics as well as story comprehension.
If you would like to have more fun with the math concepts presented in "Rabbit's Pajama Party, here are a few suggestions: Read the story with the child and describe what is going on in each picture. Ask, " What do you think will happen next?" While reading the story, point out the sequence of events in the pictures. Encourage the child to tell the story using the words " first, " " next, " " then, " and " last." After reading the story, ask, " What happened first?" What happened next?" " Then what happened?" " What was the last thing that happened?" Make a timeline for the story. For example, at 5:00 the friends arrive, at 6:00 they eat pizza, and so on. Together, discuss events that require steps in a particular order or sequence - for example, making a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich. Write down the steps as the child dictates them and then make the sandwich, following the steps exactly. If they are not in the correct sequence, discuss what went wrong and make corrections.
Following are some activities that will help you extend the concepts presented in "Rabbit's Pajama Party into a child's life:
Sleepover Party: Plan a sleepover party (real or make-believe). Discuss whom to invite. Make a list of the activities for the party and write each activity, or ask the child to draw a picture of each activity, on a notecard. Then help the child place the pictures in order to show the sequence of events.
Cartoons: Clip out a favorite comic strip from the newspaper. Cut the comic strip into separate frames and ask the child to place the pieces in the right sequence.
Games: Decide on a game that you want to play. As you're playing, talk about the sequence of events involved. What happens first? Then what happens? What would happen if you tried to play the game out of sequence?
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