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Ready, Set, Count!

Counting Principles

listed below are general explanations of the common mathematics principles that young children demonstrate, learn and/or develop over time (as outlined by LInda and Yasmin).

Counting words in order

remembering the sequence of words for counting, such as “one, two, three, four…”, “nineteen, twenty, twenty-one…” etc.

One-to-one correspondence

the exact matching of two sets when each element of the first set maps onto a specific element of the second set, for example each bear gets assigned a number – the first bear is “one”, the second bear is “two”, the third bear is “three”, and so on.


the understanding that that last counting word used not only indicates the last item but also the total number of items in the set.  When counting five frogs, (one, two, three, four, five) the word five represents the last frog in the line and also the total number of frogs in the pond.

Any order

objects may be counted in any order with one-to-one correspondence and the total number in the set does not change (objects do not need to be in a line to be counted).


can be counted!  The items in the set do not need to match to get a total:  one chair, one frog, one bear, one person and one shoe equals five.


the ability to instantly recognize the number of objects in a small group without counting them.

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Contact Information

Early Learning Transition Model Team

Ms. Kathleen Lincoln

Child Development Centers

Program Director, Retired


Ms. Toby S. Librande

Early Learning Transition Model

Grant Coordinator

408.635.2686 x5571


Ms. Linda Lambert

Milpitas Family Literacy Project

Program Coordinator, 2008-2016


Rose CDC

250A Roswell Drive

Milpitas, CA 95035


Sunnyhills CDC

356 Dixon Road

Milpitas, CA 95035

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Please Note: The information on this website is presented as a public service. MUSD does not guarantee the accuracy of information provided by referenced sites or organizations and does not endorse their products or services.

Early Math

Using Common Objects to Teach Common Core

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The Early Learning Transition Team held our most recent early learning math workshop Pre-K through second grade on January 29, 2013… at RAFT!  The presenter Jeanne Lazzarini a.k.a. "The RAFT Math Genie!” brought math to life with a RAFT tour, hands-on kits and an engaging presentation.  We were excited to have 21 teachers from five different MUSD elementary schools and the Child Development Centers attending.  The afternoon focused on exploring hands-on math projects including:  Freaky Fractals, Shape Skeletons (adapted for pen pieces and chenille stems), Mathematical Dream Catchers and Place your Number Value game.  Here are the links for the idea sheets for each activity: 

Freaky Fractals

Shape Skeletons

Mathematical Dream Catchers

Place Your Number Value

At the end of the workshop, each attendee left with a bag full of goodies, enough Freaky Fractal materials to use in their classroom the very next day and a $20 RAFT gift certificate good for a membership or materials.  Thanks goes out to RAFT for partnering with us on this workshop!

~ RAFT Math Workshop ~ Teacher Testimonials ~

All around us are fractals we can create.

I liked some of the ideas such as using the pen pieces to create 2D & 3D shapes.

All the materials/resources which are really useful for my teaching.  I can use them to set up my centers tomorrow.  Ready to go! Great!

Very good!

I enjoyed all the activities and how they are tied to math.

I really liked the Place your Number Value game.

Creative approach to extending math concepts.

Very enjoyable!

How easy it is to make a dream catcher and connect it to math as well as social studies.

How much is available at RAFT for hands-on math activities.

I learned how to use hands-on activities cross curricularly.

Great class!

Tour of facility + explanations + free kit.  $20 Thank-you!!

I like the workshop especially it involves hands on learning.  It’s fun.

Very useful to use with school age children to motivate their interests, creativity, socialization, and critical thinking.

Well taught – friendly –  relevant.

Thank you for organizing these in-services for us.  We are thankful to have such useful information to enhance our teaching.  I really, really had (a) good time.

I can use this in my classroom since they have ready made kits (ready-to-use).

Thank you for the wonderful project ideas plus the freebies J

Pre-K Students & Cubes & Bears, Oh My!

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Teacher Marisol, from the Sunnyhills Child Development Center, participated in our recent Engaging Early Learners Through Mathematics workshop (read on below to learn more about this event!), rushed back to her classroom, and incorporated some new ideas and techniques right away!  She introduced the concept of subitizing, one-to-one correspondence, patterning and a lot more. Take a look at the photos above and see how engaged and on task her children appear.  Great job Marisol!

Engaging Early Learners through Mathematics

September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012 September 18, 2012

On Tuesday, September 18, 2012 the Early Learning Transition Model held our second joint professional development session, a cross-grade collaborative workshop, Engaging Early Learners Through Mathematics. Participants included teachers from Preschool, Transitional Kindergarten, Traditional Kindergarten, First Grade, Second Grade and Special Day Classes who hailed from five elementary schools and two Child Development Centers in the district. Linda Platas and Yasmin Sitabkhan presented, thanks to generous support from the Heising-Simons Foundation.  The day included relevant research into why early math matters, an engaging outdoors movement & math activity, common core standards and preschool foundations study, lots of hands on practice and activity development.  Participants were enthusiastic and engaged.  Read on to find out what the teachers had to say about the day!

~ Early Math Workshop ~ Teacher Testimonials ~

Math can be fun for children!

Math foundation indicates future math/reading successes.

How you can take a simple lesson and scaffold it up or down to fit the needs of the students.

Subitizing!  Chance to create and think about how to use manipulatives to teach various standards.

Opportunity to collaborate/write-up/practice lessons learned/created today.  Lots of good ideas on using common, everyday materials to integrate with math.

How many games you can play with counting!

All the hands-on learning games were fantastic!  Delving into common core, collaborating with other teachers.

It was an excellent workshop!  There was a lot of great information presented.  I definitely learned a lot that I can take back to my classroom and use right away.

Loved it!  Great games.  Appreciate emphasis on hands on games.

Great energy with presenter, very engaging and worthwhile.

I really enjoyed this workshop.  Love the hands on practice!!  J  Thank you!

Very enjoyable, informative and fun workshop!

Engaging Early Learners through Mathematics - PowerPoint

Did you miss this workshop? Are you curious about the information that was presented? Don't despair! Click here to access Linda and Yasmin's full PowerPoint Presentation.  Hugs to Linda and Yasmin for sharing this resource with us.  Enjoy!

Math Games - Activity Sheets

Want to have access to the great ideas presented and generated during the workshop?  Want to print out some hands on math games for your students?

Click here to view all of the games provided by Linda & Yasmin and those created by your fellow teachers.

Each activity sheet includes targeted Common Core Standards and/or Preschool Learning Foundations, equipment needed, game instructions and scaffolding up and down ideas.  Have fun!

Workshop Agendas

How much fun did we have? What did we do?


Click here to view the agenda for the MUSD RAFT Math Workshop held on January 29, 2013.


Click here to view the agenda for the Engaging Early Learners Through Mathematics Workshop held on September 18, 2012.

Early Learning Transition Model ~ Generously funded by the Heising-Simons Foundation 2012-2013

Google Translate!

What Should My Students Be Learning?

The California Department of Education

has the answers!

Mathematics Resources

for California Students

The California Department of Education has developed grade-level specific foundations, standards, guidelines, assessments and/or best practices to guide your teaching and curriculum development.  Listed below are a few resources applicable to the early grades – spotlighting early mathematics.  Visit CDE's CCSS Mathematics Resources for Administrators page for a comprehensive list of materials and resources.


Grade: Pre-K

California Preschool Learning Foundations, Volume I

Our youngest learners are working on math acquisition every day, in every setting.  The California Preschool Learning Foundations, Volume I (the Mathematics section begins on page 143) outlines a set of behaviors in mathematical learning that older three year olds and older four year olds will develop during the preschool years.  Includes number sense, algebra and functions (classification and patterning), measurement, geometry and mathematical reasoning.

Desired Results Developmental Profile – Preschool (DRDP–PS)

Assessment – a Teacher’s Best Friend!  The DRDP-PS separates out the different developmental domains and provides a range of developmental level mastery:  exploring, developing, building and integrating.   This tool covers the ages of 3 years old to Kindergarten entry. Includes number sense of quantity and counting, number senses of mathematical operations, classification, measurement, shapes, and patterning.

Grade: TK

Desired Results Developmental Profile – School-age (DRDP – SA) and School-Readiness (DRDP-SR)

California’s newest grade – Transitional Kindergarten (TK) – serves as the bridge grade between Preschool and Traditional Kindergarten.  As such, TK can make use of both Preschool and Kindergarten resources and materials.  For assessment purposes, TK teachers can consider the DRDP-PS together with the DRDP-SA.  The DRDP-SA (Kindergarten – 12 years) overlaps with the DRDP-PS. Taken together these tools provide a continuous measure of learning and development.   Like the DRDP-PS, the DRDP-SA also separates out the different developmental domains and provides a range of developmental level mastery:  exploring, developing, building and integrating.  Includes number sense of mathematical operations, measurement, shapes, and time.

Alternatively, the TK teacher can use the DRDP - SR (School Readiness) which is aligned to the California Preschool Learning Foundations and the California Kindergarten Content Standards


Grades: K-12

K-12 California’s Common Core Content Standards for Mathematics

As MUSD moves toward implementation of the Common Core Content Standards in the fall of 2013, inquiring minds want to know what these standards are and how to teach them!  The first step is familiarization with the new standards. The newest version of the K-12 California’s Common Core Content Standards for Mathematics, updated April 2013, includes counting and cardinality, operations and algebraic thinking, number and operations in base ten, measurement and data, and geometry.

TK-12 Mathematics Framework Chapters

Take a look at the Mathematics Framework Chapters!  "The purpose of this framework is to guide the curriculum development and instruction that teachers provide in their efforts to ensure that all students meet or exceed the CCSSM. The framework provides a context for implementing the standards in the form of guidelines for educators and developers of instructional materials. Building on the standards, the framework addresses how all students in California public schools can best meet the standards."  Includes guiding principles, grade-level and course-level chapters!


A Look at Kindergarten through Grade Six in California Public Schools – Transitioning to the Common Core State Standards in English Language Arts and Mathematics, 2011

Navigating the transition to the Common Core State Standards will take work!  Transitioning to the Common Core State Standards is a handy guide that shows you how the 1997 California Mathematics Standards map out onto the Common Core State Standards (by grade level).  Once you see how the old relates to the new, you will be able to begin to integrate the new standards into your classroom teaching practice… thinking ahead for those new Smarter Balanced Assessments coming up in 2014-15!

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