Through Lemonade for Sale, a cute story of children running a lemonade stand written by Stuart Murphy, your child will learn how to keep track of sales using a bar graph. The kids in Lemonade for Sale are trying to earn enough money to repair their clubhouse. While selling lemonade in a town similar to those in the Silicon Valley, they rely on math to keep track of sales. This is a useful skill especially during the summer when your child prepares their own lemonade stand in the Silicon Valley. After reading Lemonade for Sale, your child will feel inspired to start making lemonade and setting up their own lemonade stand. At this point, this is the perfect time to suggest to your child that they keep track of sales using a bar graph. They will also gain practice with math through using money and giving change. At the back of the book, there are questions related to the content of the story and activities that will help your child build up their mathematical toolbox. I recommend this book to all children in the Silicon Valley and Bay Area who wish to start their own lemonade stand.
Math Appeal by Greg Tang, the same author as the New York Times bestseller, is a book of rhyming poems that pose math questions and provide tips and tricks for finding the answer. Math Appeal is bound to be a child’s favorite book to read and reread. It is very beneficial for your Menlo Park child to read since all of the problems are part of Menlo Park’s curriculum. It is a fun read with catchy phrases that will help your child solve math problems, particularly addition, subtraction and multiplication, faster and with higher accuracy. If your child enjoyed Math Potatoes (a review of Math Potatoes is up on the blog) they will definitely love Math Appeal as these two books are incredibly similar in the sense that they are books of math rhymes and tricks. At the back of Math Appeal, there is a section containing the answers to each question with an explanation to help your child understand the problem-solving process. I recommend Math Appeal to the children I tutor at the Mathnasium center. This book is a must read for all young children in the Palo Alto and Menlo Park school districts.
A great book to get at a library in the Silicon Valley is Safari Park by Stuart Murphy is a story almost any child can relate to. When Grandpa gets 100 tickets to an amusement park, he divides them evenly amongst his five grandchildren. The children can choose to spend the tickets as they please. With each ride costing a different number of tickets, the children have to decide which rides they want to go on and how to best spend their tickets. Your child can follow along with the children in the story and figure out if there are enough tickets to go on all of the rides they want. The author suggests giving your child twenty pieces of paper to act as tickets so they are able to follow along with the story. By actively reading Safari Park to your child, you will help them learn how to find an unknown in an equation and manage tickets/money appropriately in order to purchase all of the items they desire. Safari Park will teach your child practical math skills and is a recommended for young children in the Silicon Valley before they head to Great America in San Jose.