Golden beads are a basic Montessori math manipulative. Children work with the golden bead thousand cube, hundred square, ten bar, and units to gain the concept of place value. They gradually realize that eighteen means one ten bar plus eight units, while eighty-one means eight ten bars and one unit.
If you are reading this post, you probably googled "ten royal bars," and are disappointed. If you were on a class bus trip, you could sing "Ninety-nine Bottles of Beer on the Wall". That is another way to learn about numbers and place value, as well as drive adults crazy.
I've never been to a royal bar, but I rented two houses in Suburbia, Oklahoma built during the wet bar/great room craze. Both design amenities were highly overrated.
I can't hum a bar of music, or carry a tune in a bottle. It will be fun to attend the Dallas Opera's production of Donizetti's "Robert Devereux" tomorrow. The photo of the opera's Queen Elizabeth I appeared on the front of the Dallas Morning News weekend entertainment "Guide" section on Friday.
That was the same day a student carefully placed ten bars between his fingers to form claws, a creative but clearly unauthorized use of Montessori materials. I had to put on my teacher scowl at the same time I was imagining the costuming possibilities for Elizabethan math teachers.
© 2009 Nancy L. Ruder