Math Access for Teachers and Home Child Care Providers

Dressing: Up/Down

Math Component Routine
• Geometry
• Operations and Algebra
• Dressing

Snapshot of Development: 0 to 6 Months

Play:

Infants begin by using their eyes to explore toys and then begin to use their hands and mouths to explore. Their play is primarily shaking, banging and mouthing. At the end of this stage, they begin to look for dropped toys and may find a partially hidden object.

Communication:

Young infants recognize their parents and familiar caregivers. They smile and laugh during playful interactions, such as peek-a-boo. They make early cooing and babbling sounds.

Motor:

When on their tummies, infants learn to hold their head up and reach for toys. They begin to reach and grasp for objects, beginning with the care-givers clothes and hair and then moving to toys and objects. At the end of this stage, many infants may help hold their own bottle and help bring the bottle to their mouths. They may also begin to take pureed food from a spoon.

Materials:
Clothes

Note: Small parts create a choking hazard for children. Make sure that all materials you choose to use for an activity or lesson with children meet safety requirements. Small parts are not appropriate for children who are 5 years of age or younger.

Interactions:
 Dressing UP and DOWN is a natural part of dressing infants. Here are several ways to teach UP and DOWN while you dress the young infant: As you gently pick up a foot, leg or arm to put clothes on, say, “(Child’s name)’s foot is UP, UP, UP.” Then  say, “(Child’s name)’s foot goes DOWN, DOWN, DOWN” as you move the child’s foot gently DOWN to the ground.  Talk about putting hats UP on the top of heads and socks DOWN on feet. Talk about “Sitting UP” and “Lying DOWN” as you change the infant’s position while dressing.

Snapshot of Development: 6 to 12 Months

Play:

At the beginning of this stage, play is mostly shaking, banging, and mouthing toys. By the end of this stage, infants begin to combine objects that go together in play. They reach for and hold two objects and may begin to reach for a third. Many infants will look for dropped toys and find partially and completely hidden toys. Many infants enjoy taking things out and putting things into containers.

Communication:

At this age, infants respond when their name is called. They may turn their head, make eye contact and sometimes smile and vocalize. They may look for family members and pets when called by name. They may respond to simple requests made with gestures, such as, “Come here,” and they may understand “No” or “Stop.” They may lift their arms to be picked up, clap hands, and wave bye-bye. They love to shout and squeal and may be babbling with many different sounds. They may be participating in and sometimes initiating peek-a-boo.

Motor:

During this stage, many infants begin to sit by themselves and play. They begin to move by rolling, crawling, and cruising. They pick up toys by using a raking motion with their whole hand and by the end of this stage they are using their fingers and thumbs to pick up small objects. They may feed themselves small bits of food.

Materials:

Clothes

Note: Small parts create a choking hazard for children. Make sure that all materials you choose to use for an activity or lesson with children meet safety requirements. Small parts are not appropriate for children who are 5 years of age or younger.

Interactions:
 Dressing Infants at this age begin to “help” get dressed by participating in the activity. They help put their arms UP to reach into sleeves, push their heads through, stand with support as you pull UP their pants. Here are some ways to teach UP and DOWN as the infant helps you get him dressed.  Say, “UP, UP, UP” as you pull a shirt UP and over the child’s head. Then say “DOWN, DOWN, DOWN” as you pull the shirt on and DOWN. Model putting your arms UP high and encourage the infant to imitate you. Use the words “UP, UP, UP.” as you both raise your arms UP high. Wiggle your fingers and wave your arms UP high as you put the infant’s shirt on or off. Help the infant stand UP as you pull pants UP or DOWN. Use the words as you tell the child what is happening next and how to help. Say “Please stand UP. Let’s pull your pants UP, UP, UP.  Pants are UP.”  Or say “Please stand UP. Let’s pull your pants DOWN, DOWN, DOWN.  Pants are DOWN.”

Snapshot of Development: 12 to 18 Months

Play:

At the beginning of this stage, many infants are imitating the use of everyday objects, such as cups and spoons. This moves into early pretend play where the infant may feed you, or pretend to drink from a cup or eat off of an empty spoon. They also are great imitators and may enjoy imitating daily activities. They may enjoy putting multiple objects in containers and systematically searching for hidden toys and objects. Many infants will pat pictures in books and sometimes vocalize while looking at books.

Communication:

At the beginning of this stage, many infants begin to respond to one step directions, such as, “Give me the ball.” They may need gestures to help them understand the direction. At the end of this stage, many infants follow a related two-step direction without the help of gestures, such as, “Get the ball and give it to Daddy.” They may be pointing to ask for wants and needs and to ask you to name objects. At around 12 months of age, many infants say 1-3 words on their own and by the end of this stage may say up to 15 or more words. Many infants play turn-taking games at this stage.

Motor:

At the beginning of this stage, many infants are crawling and cruising to get around, and by the end of this stage, infants are walking with good balance. They may also enjoy walking while carrying large objects and pulling toys. When given a crayon for the first time, they may mouth the crayon or mark the paper. By the end of this stage, many infants are scribbling on paper. They may be starting to scoop food with a spoon and actually get some to their mouths. Infants may also be using a straw or open cup to drink.

Materials:

Clothes

Note: Small parts create a choking hazard for children. Make sure that all materials you choose to use for an activity or lesson with children meet safety requirements. Small parts are not appropriate for children who are 5 years of age or younger.

Interactions:
 Dressing Teach UP and DOWN as you help those independent and active tots get dressed.  Say, “UP, UP, UP” as you help and encourage the infant to pull his pants UP. And then “DOWN, DOWN, DOWN” to push pants off. You will need to help, as the young child's hand muscles and balance skills are still developing.  Say “Arms UP!” as you ask the infant to raise his arms and “Arms DOWN!” as you ask the child to lower his arms. Use the same language with feet when putting on shoes and socks.  Don’t forget about “Sit UP” and “Sit DOWN” when you need the infant to change his position during dressing.

Reflections on this Lesson

How might you teach the math lesson  - UP and DOWN - during other daily activities and routines?

What books do you have in your child care setting that include the math concept – UP and DOWN?

What songs or finger plays do you typically use in your child care setting support the math concept – UP and DOWN?

Comment on this lesson

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