As mathematics is an active learning process, it is important that children develop interest and positive attitudes towards mathematics. In order for the children to develop such interest, they need to be involved in using and applying mathematics in their environment. Children need chances to work with materials that offer the appropriate level of challenge. Rhythm instruments, songs, and books are examples that encourage sensory exploration and language related to mathematics (ref). According to Piaget, children at this age are able to solve one-step logical problems but are limited by working with concrete materials. The children developed their learning through interactive schemas as they assimilate and accommodates information on the mathematical concepts. Furthermore, children construct their own knowledge and understanding through interactions with their environment. Manipulatives are exceptionally necessary and are useful to enhance the children learning. Vygotsky suggested that teacher is to engage the children in effective questioning in regards to the concepts they are learning. They are to produce activities that present a problem to the children with examples that would help the children to reflect on and to revise the situations. This would encourage the children to stimulate their curiosity, to promote critical thinking and as a result, able to think about solutions to everyday situations.
Children need the opportunity that can help them to build knowledge based on their prior knowledge. Thus, I believe that children learn best when concrete materials are easily available, ample opportunity for the children to explore the materials such as when the lesson is been extended to the learning centres where the teacher sets up hands-on mathematics exploration to accompany the lesson, and lastly, when there is an effective communication between the child and their peers, and with the teacher for the development of mathematical language. This would encourage the children to further explore on the lesson or to recap on what has been taught. Matching is the early stages of mathematics development. It is the prerequisite skill for more difficult tasks of conservation. It involves one to one correspondence which is the foundation for mathematics skill of logical thinking. Children begin matching objects that have the same characteristics. They had to experience matching concrete objects first before proceeding to begin matching object to picture. Matching an object to a picture requires the ability to understand the picture as a representation of the actual object. This is known as symbolic representation, which is a crucial prerequisite skill to learning and using language. Matching also helps in practicing visual discrimination, in which the children becoming familiar with the print and able to connect the real objects to print. These are important for pre-reading skills (ref). The process of matching involves deep concentration on the characteristics and an immense opportunity for the children to describe their rationale behind their matching which may later transfer to other activities. Children will be able to see subtle differences between the object to see if something matches. While matching is being taught, the teacher is to introduce words to describe colour, size, shape, and texture. Mathematics words such as bigger, smaller, same, different can also be introduced to the children. As they mastered their matching skills, they will try to match more than two objects, which is known as sorting.