This is a great craft and math game for preschoolers! It helps to teach them counting, number recognition, fine motor skills and number grouping.
This is a wonderfully engaging activity for young toddlers! It is part scavenger hunt, part counting game and part matching game. All you need are a few simple household items and some math manipulatives (which you can DIY at home, if necessary). Involve your child throughout the entire process! Be sure to tell them about the super special prize for the winner of the game.
Let’s begin! You’ll need:
- 11 ziplock sandwich baggies
- a piece of printer paper or construction paper, cut into 11 roughly 1″ squares
- Flashcards numbered from 0-10 (make you own with paper and pen if necessary)
- 55 math manipulatives, or other small objects like LEGOs
- sharpie and tape
First we need to prepare the craft.
Place all 55 items into a large gallon bag. Set out the beg of items, one pile of baggies, the tape and the 11 squares of paper in front of you and your child. Keep the sharpie out of reach.
Have your child hand you one bag and one square of paper. Take the sharpie and write a “0” on the square of paper. Have your child get you one piece of tape, big enough to tape the square to the front of the baggie. You might have to guide them through pulling off the first few pieces of tape. They will quickly be able to do the entire process on their own. Let them tape the square to the baggie. Set aside.
Repeat for remaining numbers through “10”.
Now, grab the baggie with “1” on it. Have your child put one item in the bag. Have them count the number out as they put it in the bag, out loud and with you. Repeat this for each bag, counting out loud together, adding each object one at a time to the bag. If you feel your child can count the numbers out by themselves let them, helping when necessary.
Now you have 10 full baggies. Lay out the flashcards, number side up. You child might not know which numbers represent which number. Bring the baggies over to the flashcards (let them help carry the baggies) and show that certain numbers on the baggies are the same as the numbers on the flashcards.
Explain that they will close their eyes and you will hide the baggies throughout the room. They will have to find the baggie, bring it to the flashcards and match the number. Show them again that the numbers are the same on the baggies and the flashcards. Remind them of the special prize at the end for the person who completes the game and matches ALL the baggies.
Have them close their eyes. They may not be able to keep them closed and that’s ok. Hide the baggies in plain sight throughout the room.
Let your child find the bags, one at a time, and bring them back t the flashcards. “Which number does that baggie go to?” Let them match up the number they think is correct. If it is correct, praise them. If not, see how that number is similar to the one that they chose and let them try again, as many times as necessary. Praise them when they get the correct answer.
This game takes some perserverence and stick-with-it determination. When my toddler got all the baggies correct, she ran through the kitchen screaming “I AM THE CHAMPION!”. No one was more proud of her than I.
How did your number recognition craft go? Let me know in the comments section below!
Thanks for reading!