Learning Tool: Learning Palette

I’m always on the lookout for learning tools that kids love. This is my current favorite learning tool!

Product Description: I pulled this out of the box and we got started right away. The center cap screws off and the cover slides off the two posts. Each pack has twelve sturdy cards that slide onto two posts to hold it in place. Each card is labeled with the skill it is focusing on with twelve challenges. Once you have the yellow learning palette, you can just buy the card sets. Hint: look at second hand stores for these treasures. There are twelve coins, two of each color, we called the one with the center hole ‘open’ and the other ‘solid’. As the child solves each challenge, they put a coin in the corresponding slot. Once the palette is complete, flip over the card, aligning the it over the two posts, to check answers.

Using this Product: To begin with, we are going to do each of them in sequence. Then, once my son understands how the tool works, I will integrate them into the learning goals for the week. I may choose to use this to introduce or to reinforce a concept.

Homeschool uses: This is easy enough to use on the go, so I can tuck a palette and some cards in his backpack so we can have some learning fun at appointments. When this is something he can do independently, I can put this in his ‘free-time’ basket.

Classroom Uses: These would be a fun addition to any classroom. This would be an easy, independent learning station. If you want to use it in a small group here are two ideas. 1) Have each child start with an equal number of coins. Have them rotate the pallet around the group placing the coins in the correct slot. The last student gets to flip it over and correct 2) Have all the coins in a pile, then rotate the palette around the group having kids solve the challenges sequentially. The last child gets to flip it over and correct. *If a child thinks a coin is in the wrong slot, they can ask the group for feedback before moving it.

Teaching Best Practices

I like to never assume. When I took this out of the package, it seems really intuitive for me, but I don’t want to assume that my child will know what to do. This is true in most learning situations. I say most, because I do like kids to learn through discovery. For learning palettes though, best practice is “I do – We do- You do”.

I DO – I select the card, show the child how to place it on the pegs and then introduce the concept. The palettes are sometimes color coded into halves or quadrants so the child isn’t searching the entire palette for the correct slot. My child was not specially aware of this, so initially I just used my hands to cover the portion he didn’t’ need to look at, but within one sitting, he was able to view the full palette.

We Do- Let the child pick a card, watch them place it on the two pegs and ask them what they will do next. There are short instructions on each palette. Once they know the learning goal, let them get started. Ask questions along the way to check for understanding. Have them check their answers and make any corrections needed.

You Do – This is when the child gets to use the learning palette on occasion just to check for accuracy.

It is clear that the chief end of mathematical study must be to make the students think.

— John Wesley Young

Purchasing Options

First, if you are one that likes a hunt, these pop up a lot in second hand shops.

My favorite is ordering them on Amazon. Here is my associates link to their product page. You can browse the different levels and the add on packets.

Usborne books also sells these, so it is a great way to support a friend who may be a representative.

Purchasing Options



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