Series: Focus on Play

# Value of Blocks in Kindergarten

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A kindergarten teacher makes a strong case for how time spent playing with blocks supports mathematical thinking and learning in her classroom. Time well spent!

## Why is this important?

Shape attributes, composition/decomposition, and the concepts of unit and equivalence are all important topics in the Common Core State Standards. Unit blocks are a powerful and developmentally-appropriate tool for young children to explore these ideas and deepen their understanding.

Source: Erikson Institute • Copyright: Erikson Institute • Content ID: ED401-160822

# Measuring a Taller Tower with Kindergartners

Building block towers provides a natural opportunity to measure height. In this scene, children use strings and a broom.

# Making a Block Sandwich with Kindergartners

Thinking about sandwiches cut in half leads this boy to explore shape composition and equivalence with blocks.

# Matching Cards Game in PreK

A quick matching game with dot cards is a fun way for preschoolers to practice recognizing small sets without counting.

## What do you think?

#### Mari Fukuda

August 30, 2016 at 5:50pm

Thank you for this article. This will justify the need for 3-D objects/toys, and blocks in gr K. Many of the toys/manipulatives have been frowned upon and free play is not seen as useful. But for imagination, STEM and STEAM and also for flexiblility, children must experiment and play.

#### Wendy Cuellar

January 9, 2018 at 9:00pm

Thank you for this video! I am a pre-k teacher (17 years) and for the past 6 years now I have had to justify the use of playdoh, the sensory table, blocks and even markers! It has even been written down on my evaluation that there was too much block “playing” and that there was no need for the use of different types of blocks. I teach in a district where we have to test our pre-k students 3 times a year and the test consists of 22 subtests! The emphasis on testing has now even infiltrated the pre-k classroom. To make matters worse, our students’ performance counts on our evaluation! Consequently, a lot of 3,4, and 5 year olds are getting a “drill and kill” education.