Exit the Montessori Stamp Game

Production Notes - Beta Edition V2.0

The Montessori stamp game is for performing arithmetic with numbers less than 10 000. Before using this material, a child must grasp the idea that in our number system we represent a group of ten objects with one object of a higher category and that exchanging must take place when we add and subtract numbers.

In a Montessori classroom, the child will have used this concept before with the golden beads, a set of materials which consists of individual beads, beads in lines of ten, beads in squares of a hundred, and beads in cubes of a thousand, illustrating the actual quantity of units in each category.

There's a great demo about how to use the stamp game made in Flash by the Montessori Academy of Evansville, Indiana. It's sort of interactive -- waits for you to click on the next object which has to move, then illustrates it. Not true simulation because there is no counting, but nevertheless impressive.

The stamp game is one of the Montessori favourites! Typically it is used by children (ages 4-7) for both static and dynamic addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. This electronic version only supports addition and subtraction, but it incorporates "snap" to keep work neat, group select, and hot keys for rapid category exchanging. The stamp game also monitors the user's activity, offering help and instructions. This is the first material we developed which keeps score. Watch out for stamps snapping on to each other - use the hot keys. Calculation limit 9 999.

The circular chips above the stamps hold the place for a category with 0.
Click-drag places a stamp on the yellow mat.
SHIFT-clicking (holding down the SHIFT key when you click the mouse) places another stamp beside or below.
CTRL-clicking (holding down the CTRL key when you click the mouse) places nine more stamps, which greatly accelerates exchanging for a group of ten.

Dragging a box around a set of stamps selects the group. Click-dragging a selected group moves the group.
Single click away from the selected group deselects it.
Double clicking any object or group puts it back.

The stamp game's memory resets with each new question to avoid confusing the child with undo steps from a previous question.


Known Issues:
The stamps occasionally snap over one another. Use of the hot keys, or releasing a stamp on equal sides of an opening with minimize this tendancy.
No tutorial has been developed as yet. Version 2.0 incorporates Flash buttons with effects, a new layout, and new colour scheme. Some improvements have also been made in the logic.