Saturday, June 1, 2013

More Math Materials

I'm 95% sure that I'm going to be doing Montessori Math this year.  Since I have Math-U-See I'll use it as much as Link wants, just to see how he and I like it.  So now I have to figure out what materials to get and from where.

Here is what MBT has determined that you need:
  • the Decanomial Bead Bar Box
  • the Elementary Negative Snake Game
  • the Complete Bead Material
  • Forty-five Golden Bead Units
  • Forty-five Golden or Wooden Hundred Squares
  • 9 or 45 wooden 1000 cubes (one golden cube comes in the complete bead material)
From IFIT, this is what that would cost (it was a few dollars off from free shipping):

In the comments, someone mentioned that all they needed was this:
the Intro to Decimal System
the Decimal Quantity,
the 100 chain and
the 1000 chain
the short bead stair and bead chains,
the decanominal box.
wood base 10 blocks

Below is actually what she said, and I extrapolated.  I wasn't exactly sure what she meant by "wood base 10 blocks" so I guessed.

What I've done/decided to do is buy the Intro to Decimal System and Decimal Quantity, the 100 chain and the 1000 chain from one of the discount supplier. Then I made the short bead stair and bead chains, but I made them in the Math U See colors because that is what the elementary kids use. The Math U See blocks are like plastic base 10 blocks, but each quantity is a different color (a unit is green, a 5 bar is light blue, etc.)
I bought the starter set of Math U See (and am going to buy the completer set) so that is basically the decanominal box. Then I have wood base 10 blocks for the rest of the golden bead material. (I got them from a local teacher supply store when they were having their 25% off sale.)

That way, I haven't spent TOO much money, and I haven't had to spend TOO much time building my own, and then my own preschool aged children ease right into Math U See.
This is what that would look like, from A Plus Montessori:

What I need to know is how long will this last me?  Will I end up needing more later?  If so, what will I need later?

I also noticed this set from Adena (for $77+$16 for shipping), which looks like it would work all the way through the Group 2 work, but not through the other bead work:
This set includes three kinds of materials :
beads: 100 unit beads, 45 bars of 10, 45squares of 100,9 cubes of 1000
containers: 2 wooden boxes, 3 wooden trays and 4 brown cups
cards: set of 2 small number cards 1-9000 and one set of large number cards 1-9000

Then there is this from IFIT for $230+$60 shipping:  (also from KidAdvance for $242 total)

There are other math materials that I will need to buy, regardless of what bead material I get.  I don't need it all right now, but I do need some of it.  The prices look like this from A Plus Montessori:

If I got the KidAdvance set plus a Teens &Tens board, then for $295 I could make it through Group 2.  That sounds reasonable to me.  Then again, if I don't buy the full set now and wait until next year, then I will be wasting ~$68.  If I get MBT set, then I also need the Teens & Tens board and number cards.  As much as I hate it, I'm going to have to get a cabinet for the bead materials too.

$295 now, then $584 (KidAdvance) = $879
$838 now (IFIT)

Since its not that much of a difference, I'm going to have to go with the smaller purchase!

Not that I can compare directly, but on this post from MBT, she says that Me Too is gearing up for the snake game.  A year ago he was doing the collective exercises, so maybe Group 2 would take about a year.

Now I just need to figure out if there are any other materials from either math or the other subjects that I need to get while I have free shipping!

**Edited to Add**
Just realized that I don't need the Teens & Tens board yet!  That's in the next group!  But, I may need the stamp game.


  1. Oh boy, There is a lot going on here.

    It's important to know that Andie's kids use Math U See for elementary math instead of strictly Montessori math. I am SHOCKED by how much the colors of the bead bars carry through to all of the materials in elementary. I have thought to myself how happy I am that I used the correct colors. It is important for the speed of their work. For the same reason Andie needed to use the Math U See colors for her bead bars. If she is using Math U See it was important that the colors match for the speed of their MUS work.

    1. I ended up deciding that I did't like Math-U-See and I sold it on ebay! Too many worksheets, not enough activity to do with the manipulatives.

  2. In your first chart from A Plus Montessori, a couple of things...

    You don't need to buy the colored bead stairs if you are buying a decanomial box because you can pull the bead stairs from there. If you can eventually buy a set of long chains and cubes separately all of the chains on that list are fine. If you can't, you will wind up with doubles of the short chains, 100, and 1000 when you buy the complete bead material. I think you could get away without a cabinet if you make your own hangers with cup hooks. Hang the long AND the short. Store the cubes and squares in a box. The two intro to decimal sets do not have enough units. You would need to buy another 45 units (cheap). Some people think having the long chains and cubes at home is extravagant anyway, so maybe you would decide to not get them.

    1. Ah, hanging them on the wall sounds like it may be a nice option! That would take away the sting of buying the complete bead material :) I thought there were things that had to be laid out flat and I didn't want to take up precious wall space!

  3. Wood base ten materials look like this:

    They are cheaper than Montessori golden beads/wooden squares/cubes so some people get them instead.

    1. I almost got something like that, but I didn't like that you couldn't get the thousands cubes! I ended up getting the Golden Bead Material from Kid Advance, I guess later I'll just get more thousands cubes to go with it.

  4. The golden bead/number card sets weren't sold when I wrote that old post. I saw them for the first time ever in a recent Alison's catalog. I did the math and it seemed like a good way to get some number cards thrown in along with your wooden bead materials. It's a good way to go if you aren't getting the complete bead materials that include the golden 1000 cube. It also includes enough units and tens.

    It seems like you decided to get a Golden bead/number card kit plus the seguin boards. My only concern is that with that combo only you STILL won't have any bead bars to use with the seguin boards or to do any of the snake games that are done in the memorization sequence.

  5. On your SECOND A Plus Montessori list there are bunch of things you don't need. The teen bead stair tray isn't really necessary. The large number cards aren't needed if you are buying the golden bead kit that included number cards. I think you can get away without the bead cabinet...ours was free with our beads when we ordered from Adena, now that set is more expensive than when I ordered.

    The way the sequence works is that your child will do the collective exercises with golden beads, then with the stamp game, then with the small bead frame, then with the large bead frame. Maybe that will help you decide what to order when.

    1. Thank you! I ended up needing to fill out some to get to free shipping, so I got the Stamp Game, the Teens & Tens Board, the Teens Bead Stair Tray, Colored Bead Stairs 1-9. Guess I should have gotten the small bead frame :)

    2. No, not necessarily... the sequence I listed is the sequence of operations work. The teens and tens are part of the linear counting sequence. There are a bunch of sequences within the overall math sequence...operations, linear counting, memorization, etc., I was just trying to show you that you won't get to the small bead frame for a while.

  6. Okay, so to wrap up...

    I am unclear about what you decided to order NOW, but I think your first order needs to have bead bars and snake game materials (so you can start the memorization sequences). I'm not addressing chains, but I think you would need the golden bead/number cards sets PLUS the elementary snake game set (would give you bars and snake bars), and I would make your own seguin boards if your budget is that tight.

    Don't forget the iFit shipping on a large order will be free and you will pay for shipping both times at Kid Advance. Figure your shipping on your spreadsheets because it can make over a $100+ difference.

    1. You are sooo incredibly helpful, thanks! I wish I'd had a bit more patience :) I didn't get the snake game, so I'll try to combine it with a later purchase. Ever done a blog post in your head, just to realize that you never posted it? I thought I'd posted my final purchase list, but I looked everywhere for it and couldn't find it !

    2. That's okay...I had a moron moment this morning and didn't check your blog for more recent posts. For some reason all of your blog comments, just yours, have been going to my spam folder. I quick tried to answer your questions and didn' t look and see that you had already ordered. Sorry!

      The John Bowman book uses paper bead bars. Let me know if you need files for paper bead bars (colored, black and white, grey and white) to do the memorization work and I'll send you some.

    3. No worries.. I think my blogging tends to be a bit disorganized and probably makes sense only to me :)

      I don't know how much I'll end up using the Bowman book. I have been going back and forth between Meg's math album and Gettman, relying on Gettman mostly for the presentations. Honestly, at this point I don't even know what bead bars are :)

    4. LOL! Me Too is using them in today's post :)