40 Great PreSchool Number Activities to Boost Counting Skills

By 11:09:00 PM

Practice makes permanent, so here are 40 ways to get your child to practice identifying and writing numbers.
  1. Write numbers on a large sheet of paper, and let her use play dough to create and trace number shapes on each number on the paper.
  2. Let her dip a Q tip in paint, and trace the numbers. Use a clear plastic to cover the sheet with numbers.
  3. Make a number board by writing large numerals on a white sheet, sticking it to cardboard, and covering with a clear plastic sheet. Let her trace numbers regularly with a marker.
  4. Practice writing using edible finger paints like pudding, on cookie sheets or plastic trays.
  5. Give her a bowl of different shapes of pasta. Let her sort them, and count how many of each kind there are. Let her write down the numbers herself in a worksheet.
  6. Do more such sorting and counting exercises with M & M’s. Let her count the different colored ones in a packet.
  7. Have a bunch of index cards with a single numeral on each. Hold up each card and ask her to hop or jump as many times as the number on the card.
  8. Enjoy preschool number activities together. Paste a rabbit or elephant’s picture on a lunch bag and give her smooth pebbles, peanuts, or pieces of construction paper. Write down numerals on a bunch of index card. Hold up each card. Let her “feed” the animal that many peanuts or carrots by counting them and putting them in the bag.
  9. Clap a certain number of times. Let her listen, count and clap the same number of times.
  10. Make your own number scrap book. Use pictures from magazines, or stickers to paste on each page. Let her write each number on a page. Allow her to decide the colors of the marker and pictures for herself.
  11. Look for numbers every time you’re out of the house – on license plates, shop numbers, hoardings etc.
  12. Look for numbers inside the house – on cans, books, newspapers, the phone book, shoe sizes, clothes tags.
  13. Combine learning with shopping at the supermarket - ask her to fetch two tins of milk, or 4 packets of chips.
  14. Use playing cards and buttons. Let her place the appropriate number of buttons on the hearts, or spades, clubs or diamonds on each card
  15. Let her count the number of hearts or clubs on each playing card and count out pasta shapes or M & M’s.
  16. Enjoy more number activities for preschoolers. Line up 10 food baskets with numerals on them, from 0 to 10. Give her 55 objects - spoons, plastic cups, small toys – and have her put the required number of objects into each bucket. By the time she finishes, there should be no objects left.
  17. Write out numbers 1 - 0 on a sheet and have her erase a number as you say it our aloud at random. By the time, you’re done, there should be no more numbers on the sheet.
  18. Hold up index cards with a numeral on each. Let her take a look at the number, and make chains of paper clips.
  19. Attach a magnet to a string. Place cards with a numeral on each, and attach a paper clip to each card.  When you call out a number, let her fish for that card.
  20. Make numbers out of round and straight pretzels, pasta shapes, and cooked spaghetti.
  21. Use thinking and counting games.  Have her count out pasta according to questions you ask – How old are you? How many people live in this house? How many friends do you have? How many brothers do you have? How many sisters? When is your birthday?
  22. Combine exercise with numbers.  Let her look at the date on the calendar.  If it’s the 15th, let her touch her toes 15 times.
  23. Place cardboard cutouts of numbers under a sheet of paper and let her rub over the sheet with crayons.  As the number begins to take shape, let her guess the number.
  24. Use counting rhymes, and often.
  25. Write numbers on circular pieces of thick paper, and punch a hole in each.  Let her string them in sequential order, and make a necklace to wear.
  26. Use cues to help her write numerals – “Straight line down makes the number 1,” “Half a cookie and put it on a plate makes number 2,” “Around the tree and around again makes number 3,” “Down and over and down again makes number 4,” “Across and down and around the tree makes number 5.”
  27. Let her count foods she eats as one– an apple – and foods she eats as many – peas.
  28. Let her use the fingers of both hands to show the numbers that you call out. For 5, she could use three fingers of one hand and two of the other, or some other combination.
  29. Cut a cake, and count the slices.  Cut up fruit, and let her count the slices, or vegetables as you chop into smaller pieces.  Cut cheese into multiple strips, if she can count beyond 10.
  30. Play a game of Twister.  Place large pieces of construction paper with numerals on them on the ground.  Let her place her right foot on 5, her left hand on 3 and so on.
  31. Count the number of body parts she has – how many eyes, ears, hands, legs, mouth? Can she count the hairs on her head?
  32. Give her index cards with numerals on them, and let her punch as many holes as the number on the card with a punch machine.
  33. Write down numerals in an ice cube tray, or place stickers in the empty sections of a candy box.  Let her count, and place the required numbers of buttons, or beads in each section.
  34. Give her a dollar, and ask her to pick out anything in the supermarket that costs a dollar.
  35. Let her weigh out ingredients in the kitchen with you – 2 eggs, 3 bananas, 4 tablespoons of sugar, 2 cups of flour and so on.   Such measuring activities in the kitchen can help make math enjoyable.
  36. Give her a shoelace or wool, and let her trace numerals on a sheet of paper.
  37. Give her a tray with sand, and let her trace numbers in it with her finger.
  38. Stuff an old sock with sand, and make a small hole at the bottom.  Let her use the dripping sand to make numbers in the yard.
  39. Cut out numerals made of sandpaper by tracing them out with the help of a stencil. Let her trace her fingers over each numeral.
  40. Make your own sensory numeral cards.  Cut out numerals from thick paper with a stencil and drip wax from colored candles to trace each numeral in a series of dots. When dry, the dots giver her a wonderful sensory learning experience.  If you’re okay with her using a burning candle, help her make the wax dots herself.
Tip: Introduce your child to few numbers at a time.  Begin number learning lessons in the morning, so you can continue practicing these activities through the rest of the day.
Above all, have fun!

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