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Sorting and Collecting: Learn About It

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As infants, children begin to sort similar objects into groups. Their know-how for sorting grows whenever they separate objects into groups that are the same or different — and as they develop the language skills for talking about it. You can help your child learn more about how to sort by talking about objects and their attributes (e.g., shape, size, texture, color etc.) at home, at the park, at church — wherever you are!

In this short video you saw how children learn to sort in everyday activities at home and in their neighborhood. You heard that sorting skills grow as children learn that:

  • Objects have characteristics like size, shape, color, texture, etc. These characteristics are called attributes.
  • Objects can be put into groups based on the same/different attributes.
  • Groups of objects with a similar attribute are described by that attribute. Describing groups by their attributes is called classifying.
  • We can sort objects in more than one way — e.g., a set of toy blocks can be grouped by color, shape or size.
  • We can sort objects by more than one similar attribute — e.g., blocks that are green and round go in one group, while those that are blue and square go in another group.

That’s five big ideas to consider when learning how to sort!

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Your Progress

3/7: Look around! There are math-learning opportunities in your home, throughout your day, and in your local community.

Family Math progress pie chart three