Montessori Elementary Homeschool Blog - with documentation of our infant Montessori, toddler Montessori, and primary Montessori experiences; as well as preparation for the upcoming adolescent Montessori homeschool years.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Algebraic Trinomial Cube

This cube goes by several names - but the most important fact is that it is NOT the trinomial cube.

As Legoboy so recently and astutely discovered:

Poorly cropped - but
1) someone skipped getting dressed
2) I wanted to include an image
 of the squaring/cubing

"It's just like the trinomial cube!" He proclaimed when he first saw it. "But the colors are different," he side-commented to me to be sure I didn't ask him about the changing colors as I did with the tower of cubes versus pink tower.

But I still had him one-upped ;) "Hmm. Different colors, alright. I'll let you explore this while I go do something else and keep myself from interrupting you!" He just smiled and proceeded to work.

When he was done, he brought it to me, and said, "Oh Mama! The colors were VERY different! They didn't even match the lid on every layer like the trinomial! This is a CRAZY cube!" (keep in mind our trinomial cube is not in our home right now - it's over at the local school building).

I told him as soon as we get our trinomial cube back into our hands, I will show him the story of the Three Kings. Of course, just to be contrary, he says, "I already know about the Three Kings! I can skip that presentation!" (sound like some adults we know? I already know it (based solely on the title or perhaps the title and the main headings, then skip the actual content, which just MIGHT actually be nuanced different, if not entirely different... and then wonder why things aren't working right;) hehe - Yep, that describes me!)

"Oh no, my son, not THOSE three kings! These are the Cubed Kings!" That got his interest up! He's been asking for a week now. Perhaps next week we'll get to it. I like to keep up some anticipation (and I do want to review a couple of other concepts before working with the Kings.).

Yeah, we had fun with this one!

Stylized version - I know how tricky the illustrations can be!
Tricky - but NECESSARY
for each and every step!
Don't know the Kings?

Pick up a Keys of the Universe mathematics album ;)

HONEST review here - from a homeschooling mom - NOT from a Montessori trainee:
There is a free elementary math album available online, with which I usually agree as to the order and general set up of presentations, but I am thoroughly perplexed by its version of the Three Kings - (this part comes from me as a trainee: and I KNOW it! And I know what is trying to get across and what comes next.) Back to being JUST a homeschooling mom: But the instructions are confusing, the story is BLECK-boring until you realize that the *actual* story comes after the presentation in the album and is actually mildly interesting but leaves some strange questions, the whole set up begs to know what pieces to move when and as a mom I want it all together so I can SEE what is going on, and I really-really want those black pieces to be the same height as their king - it just makes sense when you see the other attendants the same height as their own king. But this album has them all laid flat.    It just does not look appealing - while mathematically correct, there is another way that makes the math more clear, leaves out the strange questions and keeps the appropriate parts of the presentation together in order. I'll stick with the Keys of the Universe version ;)
Sorry! I really do LIKE that album - I just don't "love" it and I'm very honest about things these days.


  1. I think I trained in the same school as the free album one, but my album has it where the story goes with presentation #1. Doesn't the album already say that noone can be taller than the king and that's why the pieces are laid out the way they are?

    1. Good questions! I need to dig into it again as I haven't worked with it in a little while now.