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For Educators Contact Us Home Count Zero
Counting Together is designed to help
children develop the essential math skills
of Addition and Subitizing.
What is Subitizing?
"Subitizing is a fundamental skill in the development
of students' understanding of numbers".

– Arthur J. Baroody, Professor of Curriculum & Instruction
(early childhood and elementary mathematics education)
at the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign.

"Within minutes of arriving at the Pre-School and showing the kids how to play, we couldn't tear them away. One parent said, "I have never seen my daughter so excited to play a game."

Subitizing, is instantly recognizing a number of objects without counting.   This new mobile app, Counting Together, reinforces and accelerates the innate subitizing skill in an interactive, self paced format enhanced by state of the art 3-D style graphics and ear tantalizing sound.

Subitizing is a method that saves time through faster recognition of items rather than individual counting. Counting Together allows the student to play/practice virtually anywhere and anytime, alone or with friends. For quantities that become too large to subitize in one glance, the foundation is there for subitizing a base number and then adding on from there, which saves time in addition and subtraction instruction.

At what age should children be Subitizing?

Students coming into Kindergarten should hold the skill of subitizing up to five objects.  Most kindergarteners can subitize three objects, but many struggle with four and five objects. Having to stop and physically count objects, slows the thought process and interrupts the flow of the problem solving.  Simple arithmetic becomes tedious for the young child.

Subitizing is the ability to see a group of objects and know "perceptually" the total number without counting.  It is one's ability to look at a group of objects (usually two, three, four, and five) and know which group has more even without counting.  It is a visual recognition of a number.  Research has found that babies only four months old and many animals (such as birds) have this mathematical skill.  ( Miller, D. J. (1993). Do animals subitize? In S. T. Boysen & E. J. Capaldi (Eds.), The development of numerical competence: Animal and human models (pp. 149–169). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.)

Are schools teaching Subitizing?

Seeing the quantities and knowing the number that matches it is helping to make connections to promote relationships between numbers and number sense, rather than abstract ideas.

Today many schools across the United States and Canada are teaching subitizing as a way of making abstract ideas more concrete using visualization techniques to teach math, hopefully making it easier and more meaningful to learn basic arithmetic instead of the traditional memorization methods. Counting Together fills the need for a fun method of reinforcement for today's tech-savvy school child. As the child plays the game, the app itself reinforces the correct answer both with a number visually and with sound effects.  The game increases in difficulty to maintain a challenging environment for the child. Players can also choose their degree of difficulty.

There are many everyday ways for teachers and parents to help strengthen subitizing skills, as well as ways to help practice school math equations, such as addition and subtraction with subitizing. Counting Together is the first mobile app that your child can play alone, with an adult, or interactively and remotely with friends and classmates to practice these skills. The dinosaur theme and captivating color and sound make Counting Together all but irresistible!

Knowing the basics of subitizing and that it is about recognizing and not just counting numbers is an important start. Knowing subitizing is taught because it includes visualization in learning and creates a better understanding of math and its relationships, and that subitizing skills can be practiced easily in everyday life, will help parents gain a better understanding of the change in learning techniques and the purpose of math in school today. Playing the Counting Together app with one's child allows the parent to experience the lesson firsthand and practice the fundamental skills in tandem.

Counting Together serves as a bridge between home and school; it increases the relevance of school work by bringing into the home the familiar techniques that children see and use at school.   And by offering children a chance to use image- and sound-based communication, it can help children better relay information about their day to their families.  It also can improve communication between educators and families with the Counting Together record keeping feature, helping both parent and teacher to measure performance and progress.

Subitizing is a way of instantly counting. In fancy math terms it would be getting to the cardinal number of a set (how many) without going through the ordinals (counting each one's position). There are two types, perceptual and conceptual. Perceptual is perceiving the number of objects immediately. Conceptual is putting a little effort into it.

"Counting Together" tracks each player's performance at 3 different difficulty levels. And you can email this information!
The comparison of numeracy to literacy is curious. Learning math is the opposite of learning to read. When you read, usually simultaneous to learning a language, you sound out words and then put meaning to those words. When you learn to count and do math, you know the meaning inherently and later put a language to it.

At some point we learn to recognize words without sounding them out. And at some point we learn to recognize quantities without counting them out. This is called subitizing.

(Math is Not a Four Letter Word: blog by Bon Crowder (Master of Science, Mathematics, University of Houston, 1998)

©2012 Barrett Productions, LLC