Education.com

# Mathematics Development (page 5)

By G.A. Davis|J.D. Keller
Pearson Allyn Bacon Prentice Hall

### Classifying

Classifying is a way of comparing. Classification refers to putting like things together and naming the group, such as big bears, little bears; shiny shells, dull shells; round buttons, square buttons; or smooth rocks, rough rocks. Classification schemes are important for young children to construct, as they are central to scientific thinking. Rocks, seashells, birds, seeds, and just about everything in nature has a classification system defining it.

More specifically, classifying is the division of items into groups by identifying a specific attribute that we recognize. We identify specific attributes or pertinent discrete characteristics that distinguish items within the collection. We can classify cars and trucks, dogs and cats, meats and vegetables.

Classifying is a natural activity for young children. They love to collect items from nature. Rocks, leaves, acorns, seashells, and pinecones become important collections.

Children separate their treasures by texture, color, shape, size, and favorites. Attributes are inherent characteristics of objects. Classification is often explored with commercial manipulatives called attribute blocks. Typical attribute block sets classify by color (red, blue, yellow), size (big, small), shape (square, circle, rectangle, triangle), and thickness (thick and thin). Attribute blocks are valuable for initiating classification development because the attributes are discernable.

It is also good to use more natural objects than attribute blocks, objects that are real aspects of the child’s world. As mentioned, young children can gather, play with, and sort items such as seashells, leaves, seeds, rocks, and other natural objects from their backyard, nearby park, or other natural area.

Classification is an extension of sorting. In a classification, the collection of items continues to be divided into subgroups until each item is unique. Children can design classification of common objects around them. Classifications tend to be based on more obvious characteristics so that all can agree on how the items fit in the classification.

150 Characters allowed

### Related Questions

#### Q:

See More Questions