Perfect Picture Book Friday: Mission: Addition

Author/Illustrator: Loreen Leedy
Publication Info: Holiday House, 1997
Intended audience: Kindergarten – Grade 2
Genre: nonfiction picture book
Themes/topics: math
Opening and synopsis:
“It was a stormy day, and Miss Prime’s classroom was dark.
‘I’m going to show you just the facts — the addition facts.
Suppose you’re a detective and you find two fingerprints, then you find three more.
Here’s how you write the addition fact with numbers:
2 + 3 = 5′”
 Miss Prime’s class solves all kinds of addition problems, from adding up how many pets they have to summing their restaurant bills.
Why I like this book: Loreen Leedy makes math fun. Here’s the proof: my 5-year-old has requested Mission Addition over and over and over again. And seeing math as fun rather than a slog is a good thing. A recent study showed attitude — yours and your child’s — plays a major role in how successful your children are at math. See Annie Murphy Paul’s column about the study by Andrew Martin of the University of Sydney. With that in mind, I am always on the lookout for fun math books like Leedy’s as well as those of David Schwartz and Ann McCallum.
Resources: On Leedy’s site, she recommends having children add up all the living creatures in their homes, for example family members and pets. You could also replicate some of the activities from the book. Draw a picture  and encourage your children to write a word problem based on the picture. Then solve it. Or help your children weed out old clothes and toys and host a garage sale. Let them add up how much they make from their sales. Leedy also has a handout with Mission Addition activities available on her site (NOTE: It also includes activities from her other early books).
Every Friday bloggers review “Perfect Picture Books.” Find a complete list of book reviews organized by topic, genre and blogger at author Susanna Leonard Hill’s site.
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24 responses to “Perfect Picture Book Friday: Mission: Addition

  1. Miss Prime – how sweet! In our elementary school’s KG the kids had to make some poster or other presentation showing 100 items – anything they wanted, any way they could. Our kids went to a small Montessori for KG, but I loved looking at what the kids came up with each year!

  2. Math is a tough one for lots of kids. I have a daughter who struggles with it, so I am glad to see a book like this one and eager to check it out. Thanks, Kirsten!

  3. Now this is a book I should have had when I was in school. I hated maths and still can’t do it to save myself. Funnily enough I am in banking and retail, luckily for me the computors do all the adding…lol. Great book and great idea, to make maths FUN!

  4. Math is fun! And beautiful in it’s logic and patterns. It’s the repetitive drills that kids are forced to do that suck the joy out of it ;) A great recommendation to show how math does come into play in so many ways in daily life.

  5. Most kids love math, until they find out they are doing math. :) They take joy in counting beads, figuring out if they had 3 cookies and shared one then how many would they have left. Perhaps if they had books like this, they would continue to enjoy it!
    Thanks for the activties as well, Kirsten…summer is an awesome time for parents to keep the learning mode active with fun stuff that’s educational.

      • Teehee! So very happy you are going to have fun with it! I wish I could put it in the hands of EVERY parent of young children. Even though I originally put “recommended for ages 2-5, it is really great for older kids as well.

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