Growing math minds... Changing math mindsets
Registration now open for the 2021 Virtual Early Math Symposium! Find information HERE!
Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons
by James Dean
Back to Children's Literature
Press Here
Pete the Cat is wearing his favorite shirt, the one with the four groovy buttons. One by one the buttons pop off! But losing the buttons doesn’t bother Pete, he just keeps singing his song and subtracting to tell how many buttons are left.
Resources for Pete the Cat and His Four Groovy Buttons:
Full Book Review (English)
Full Book Review (Spanish)
Brief Book Review (English)
Brief Book Review (Spanish)
Pete keeps losing his buttons one by one, but does Pete get upset? No way!
Math Connections:
Subtraction Counting
Activities to Do Together:

As Pete loses each button, ask your child to count how many are left.

Practice reading the equations with your child.

Talk about the equal sign as being the balance point in the equation; what is on one side of the equal sign has the same value as what is on the other side of the equal sign.

Practice a “count down”! 10, 9, 8, 7, 6, …
Extension Questions:

What would you do if the buttons on your shirt started popping off?

How is subtracting one like a count down?

In what other situation would you count backwards or subtract one at a time?

Use big buttons to follow along with the story, taking one away as Pete loses each button. Ask How many are left now?
Vocabulary for Building Math Concepts:
four, one, three, two