I try to find opportunities to introduce famous artwork to my two children. While looking for books to reinforce maths concepts, I came across Math-terpieces: The Art of Problem-Solving by Greg Tang.
Perfect! A math book AND an introduction to art history 🙂
Math-terpieces is part of a series written to teach children creative maths problem-solving skills. In this book targeted at 4-8 year olds, 12 famous works of art are used to teach children addition using groups. The masterpieces featured include work from various different art styles – including impressionism (Monet), pointillism(Seurat), fauvism (Matisse), cubism (Pablo Picasso), abstraction (Mondrian), surrealism (Dali) and pop art (Warhol).
An example with Henri Matisse’s The Goldfish is shown below. On the left, the artwork is shown together with a short poem to highlight the key element from this painting. Here, the reader is tasked to find 6 different ways to group the fishes in groups of nine.
At the end of the book, the strategy to solve the mathematical problem is discussed, and solutions are given. There is also a short introduction to the various art styles found in the book.
C found this book to be a welcome break from her usual math worksheets, and was even inspired by the art (she requested to do some paintings!). I found the book a refreshing change from the
boring conventional maths books, and have bought more from the same series 🙂
How do you teach maths?