Teaching numbers to preschoolers activities

Numbers Activities for Preschoolers - I Can Teach My Child!

Learning numbers is an essential of early childhood education. The following number activities for toddlers to preschoolers  will provide fun and hands-on ways of teaching your child numbers and one-to-one correspondence. From counting aloud to higher level math skills, number recognition is an essential preschool skill!

Pumpkin Match Game

This is such a fun numbers activity that combines one-to-one correspondence and number recognition. Toddlers will enjoy putting the pumpkins in their slots and preschoolers will enjoy counting the dots and matching the correct numbered pumpkin.

Counting With Stamps

Understanding that numbers are not just symbols, but represent quantities, is an important concept for preschoolers to learn. Too often, children can recite their numbers, but don’t fully understand what the numbers represent. This combined numbers activity and matching numbers game can help children with understanding and comparing numbers.

Number Flashcards

Anytime you can incorporate multiple senses into an activity, it is beneficial for your child’s learning. In this number recognition activity, your child will be using 2 of their senses, both sight and touch. Make your own number flashcards with some sand and glue.

Push Pin Art With Numbers

The idea for learning numbers with push pins came from Big Brother’s preschool teacher, who has been using this method for one of the alphabet stations in her classroom. It is super simple, great for teaching letter and number formation, and even helps your child develop the proper grip needed for writing.

Do A Dot Numbers

These Do-A-Dot Markers are so cool…and they’re especially wonderful for pre-writers. The thing I love about them is that they are so versatile and they allow your child to learn the correct formation of numbers before having to have the fine motor control to actually write them. Here’s a simple do-a-dot number activity you can do with them.

How To Teach Skip Counting

Using an abacus is an excellent way to make skip counting tangible for preschoolers. By adding the physical element of manipulating the abacus, children can comprehend the action of skip counting more accurately than teaching using only rote memorization.

Counting Big Numbers On An Abacus

After learning skip counting, teach your kids how to count big numbers (and teach place value in the process) on an abacus.

Dominoes Addition

Big Brother is learning to add, so we took the opportunity to turn a traditional game of dominoes into a fun math activity. This domino addition with dot markers can also be used to teach the concept of odd and even numbers using two  different colors of dot markers.

Find The Mystery Number

Learning numbers is more fun when you get to dig for them! Before doing any directed activity with the birdseed, just give the kids some scoops, funnels, or cups and they will stay busy for a long time! While they are busy playing, you can get all your supplies ready for this mystery number dig.

Pumpkin Dot To Dot

This Roll and Mark Pumpkin Dot Art number activity is super simple and perfect for preschoolers. Combine number learning and number recognition in with pumpkin play.

Counting Buttons

Little Sister and I have been loosely working on one-to-one correspondence and number recognition lately. I thought this would be the perfect opportunity for some Corduroy Math, inspired by this timeless book! Free teddy bear printables included for this activity.

Counting With Leaves

What kid doesn’t love playing in a big pile of leaves? Get your kids outdoors and mix some number learning with hands-on play!

Number Detectives

Invite your kids to be number detectives and “capture” their numbers by squirting them with water. Have fun outdoors while simultaneously working on so many skills, such as counting, number recognition, gross motor, and fine motor skills.

Counting With Popsicle Sticks

This simple number activity is great for number recognition, one-to-one correspondence, and fine motor control! We used some robot stickers to make the activity even more appealing to Little Brother.


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40 Awesome Number Activities for Preschoolers

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27 Apr

Math & 123s
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Number activities for preschoolers don't have to be boring and just worksheets, make them fun so your preschooler will love math!

I love math. I’m a nerd, yes. But I love anything to do with numbers.

I really do hope I can pass this along to my kids by making learning activities about numbers and counting fun for them and not a chore.

As I’m typing this, Henry’s shouting excitedly as he’s counting how many things on his sprayer…though I’m not really sure what he’s counting exactly. He made it to 39 though!

Because I’m a huge math nerd I searched for easy and fun number activities for preschoolers.

My Favorite 40+ Number Activities for Preschoolers!

Try these activities to help preschoolers learn their ABCs!

Recognizing Numbers Activities for Preschoolers

Identifying numbers can be a learning experience for preschoolers (and younger!). Many of the ABC recognition activities can also be adjusted for numbers.

My kids love these 12 number activities for preschoolers to recognize numbers.

  1. Turn a number into sensory art – perfect for the 100th day of school!
  2. Go on a hunt for numbers and match it with the same number!
  3. Follow a number from start to finish in a maze.
  4. Trace numbers, really big!
  5. Little Family Fun created a parking lot with numbers.
  6. Pop! Find the number and pop it!
  7. Find and match playing cards.
  8. Have target practice with water balloons and numbers, like Motherhood on a Dime
  9. Make art! Do this paint by number canvas art.
  10. Use stickers and printable number cards to play hide and seek, from Teach Mama.
  11. Draw and paint over numbers with q-tips, like Toddler at Play!
  12. Clip and match with giant numbers from You’ve Got This Math!
Activities for Number Recognition

Counting Activities for Preschoolers

Learning there’s a sequence to the numbers and what comes next. Try these 18 number activities to help preschoolers learn to count.

  1. Connect the dots! A simple past-time activity that reinforces the order of numbers.
  2. Upcycle a box into a puzzle of numbers!
  3. Create a maze of numbers to drive through. Can they count their way to the end?
  4. Stacking up boxes and counting how high you can go!
  5. Make a craft together with multiple pieces. Have your child do the counting!
  6. Count cars of a particular color while on the road, or semis, or vans, whatever suits their interest!
  7. Create a learning game with your ABC mat and number blocks. Choose a number block and pound the corresponding times with a hammer on the corresponding number mat!
  8. Let your child run an experiment and measure how much something holds! How many cups fit?
  9. Make puzzles with a picture. Label sections of the puzzle in numerical order. Cut apart and have your child put it back together again, from Growing in PreK.
  10. Use friendly animal crackers to practice counting and number recognition, like I Can Teach My Child.
  11. Measure objects (or yourself!) and count how big they are, from The Imagination Tree
  12. Count objects around the house. No Time For Flash Cards wants to know “How many doors do you have?”
  13. Play any board game, or make your own! Little Family Fun creates a fish race game!
  14. Count with LEGO! Do Play Learn likes to label a paper with numbers and count out the LEGO next to it.
  15. Snack time! Use dice and fruit snacks and play until you eat them all up, like Kids Activities Blog.
  16. Have a bean bag toss on the stairs, number them!
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Counting Activities for Preschoolers

One to One Correspondence Activities for Preschoolers

Knowing your numbers is one thing and knowing how to count is another. But being able to put them into context that they each have meaning is done with one to one correspondence.

Get ready for preschool with 35 name activities!

I love these 12 number activities that help a preschool practice one to one correspondence.

  1. Head out into nature and explore flowers. Count and compare flower petals! 
  2. Go on a hunt for a number and match it to its corresponding dots.
  3. Build towers of blocks on a number mat, with the correct number of blocks high!
  4. Spark your child’s interest with their interests! A farming approach of loading grain bins with the corresponding number of pieces of “grain.
  5. Have a newspaper throwing game and count up the newspaper balls, or how many you make, or miss!
  6. Make something in the kitchen together, or do an experiment and let your child measure out and do the counting.
  7. Sort through objects by color, and count how many you have of each!
  8. Fill a dump truck with objects (like Dominoes!) and count how many you can fit in there, like Inspiration Laboratories.
  9. Estimate first for some fun and then count item, from Teach Preschool.
  10. Have a counting race in the front yard and pick dandelions in the process!
  11. Roll a die (or two!) and practice one to one correspondence as kids build towers with blocks.
  12. Use a dice and small objects (like pom poms or corn kernels) and count them and fill up a tray.
One to One Number Activities for Preschoolers

Counting and number books that will get preschoolers excited about numbers:

  • The Baker’s Dozen: A Counting Book
  • I Spy Numbers
  • One Big Building: A Counting Book About Construction (Know Your Numbers)

Do you actively work on numbers and counting with your child? Share your favorite activities!


About Jamie Reimer

Jamie learned to be a hands on mom by creating activities, crafts and art projects for her three boys to do. Jamie needed the creative outlet that activities provided to get through the early years of parenting with a smile! Follow Jamie on Pinterest and Instagram!

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90,000 how to teach a child to figures at 3


  • The best age
  • Rules for the organization of lessons
  • Stages of the training process
  • Classes with didactic materials
  • Variety of exercises
  • Use of various forms of work

Active development of the child should occur from an early age, therefore, at the age of 3, it is worth starting to learn numbers, using various games, manuals, and didactic materials for this purpose. Depending on the abilities of a particular baby, you can master counting up to 10 or even up to 100, the main thing is that everything is clear to the baby and he enjoys the lessons.

The best age

There is a well-known phrase “after three it's too late”. Indeed, scientists have proven that babies at 2. 5-3 years old have a unique ability to memorize, which weakens with age. Therefore, three-year-olds are quite capable of making their first trip into the world of mathematics and learning numbers, this will help their development and will be an excellent method of preparing for school. In addition, working with didactic materials, such as Kuizener sticks, improves fine motor skills, which, in turn, has a beneficial effect on speech.

That's why the first lessons in arithmetic can be done as early as 3 years old. However, if the baby is not yet ready for this, it is worth giving him time, postponing the start of lessons until 4-5 years old.

Rules for the organization of the lesson

To ensure that acquaintance with numbers does not turn into “catharsis” for the child, the following principles of work should be used.

  • Learning by playing. Regular guests in the classroom should be toys, dolls, fictional fairy-tale characters.
  • Praise is the best motivation, and scolding the baby is not worth it. It is important for parents to remember that the child does not understand why adults are unhappy with him, because he really tried. This attitude can permanently kill his desire for learning. Therefore, strictness should be forgotten.
  • Classes should be conducted continuously, so you can put large bright cards with numbers, number series on the wall in the baby's room. The main thing is that the pictures should contain not only the number itself, but also the amount indicated by it. For example, a deuce and two oranges.
  • Combine different activities. So, modeling figure-figures from dough or plasticine not only helps their assimilation, but also contributes to the development of fine motor skills.
  • You should not overload the baby with new knowledge, for one day of acquaintance with one new number is enough. When he has learned to clearly imagine that 1 is one subject, and 7 is seven, you can start learning to count.

Compliance with these simple rules will help parents not only pass on useful knowledge to their little ones, but also enjoy the lesson itself and communication.

Stages of the learning process

It is not easy to teach a child numbers, this matter should be approached carefully and seriously - so arrange the work in such a way as to follow the logic “from simple to complex”.

There are several stages of work.

  1. Acquaintance. The parent prepares the material in advance: a card, which shows, for example, one or two, selects the required number of identical items. After that, he explains that “today we are getting acquainted with the number “One”, it denotes one object. Here, look, there's only one bear." How many bears do you see?
  2. Memorization. Offer the child various tasks that will help him remember what the unit looks like and what it means. Let's help him a little. Tasks should be of two types: first, those that help to correlate the number with a specific amount, and then those aimed at remembering the appearance of the number.
  3. Fastening. The next "portion" of tasks that the baby must already complete completely independently.
  4. New material.

It is necessary to emphasize the connection with the past, show one bear and ask how many bears the child sees, then put the second one up, say that there are now two bears. You should not overload the child, acquaintance with each subsequent figure should be carried out only when the previous one is well learned. If parents do not have the opportunity to buy the same toys, cards, sweets, fruits, vegetables will come to the rescue. When deciding where to start, the exercises must be selected in such a way that each of them is accessible to the baby.

Activities with didactic materials

Thanks to their variety, games with specially designed sets, such as Cuisener's sticks, are suitable for children from 3 to 5 years old. You can choose those options that best correspond to the level of development of the crumbs.

Tasks for the following templates are suitable for kids.

  • Find three yellow sticks.
  • How many sticks do I show?
  • Find two blue sticks and four yellow sticks. What more?
  • Parent lays out a square of sticks and then asks how many sticks did I use to create the figure? The opposite task is also possible: fold the figure using only 5 (or any other number) sticks.

Doman's card technique has proven itself well, which helps to remember the appearance of the number and its meaning. The tasks are also simple.

  • Mom shows a card, the child's task is to understand what number is shown on it, and find its pair - another card on which the required number of objects is drawn.
  • Then vice versa - the mother chooses a card, for example, with two bears, the child must find a pair for her - "2".
  • Mom shows a card with three hares and asks the child to find the number of objects in the apartment that is shown in the picture. The preschooler can bring her three apples.

Expert's opinion

Tanya Okhrimenko, educational psychologist: It's great to learn numbers with a child in a game. And you can do it not only at home. For example, going up the stairs and counting the steps. The main thing is that if the child does not remember them, do not worry, let a little time pass and everything will be fine with him. For example, what a child remembers for weeks at 3 years old, at 5 he will be able to remember in a matter of minutes if he wakes up with “cognitive interest”.

You can buy these cards or make your own.

For preschoolers who are well versed with the first ten, you can also use Zaitsev's number tape, which is a series of numbers from 1 to 99. You can place it on the wall so that the manual is always in front of your eyes. Tasks may vary.

  • An adult describes a number: two tens, three ones. The task of the child is to understand that we are talking about 23, and show the number on the tape.
  • Whose number is greater. Mother and child each take one card with numbers written on it. The child must understand whose number is more important, and then find both on the tape.
  • Find the age of each family member on Zaitsev's tape.

All this will help preschoolers form the correct idea of ​​numbers.

A variety of exercises

There are a large number of exercises, the implementation of which will help a 3-year-old child to get acquainted with numbers, remember how they look and what the number means. Some of them can be used at the age of 4 years. You need to start with what the child knows well.

  • Sample. The mother puts a dish in front of the child, on which fruit or sweets lie, and asks him to score, for example, three pieces (for example, “give mother three sweets”). The second version of the task - the mother herself puts aside a certain amount of sweets and asks the child to count them, and then say how many sweets are in the pile.
  • Find the number. An adult asks a preschooler to show him all the units that are presented on a pre-prepared poster. This will help the baby remember what the number looks like.
  • Find a couple. The parent prepares two series of pictures: one shows large numbers, the other shows illustrations for fairy tales familiar to children. For example, two Ivans, three bears, seven Simeons, and so on. The child's task is to match the picture and the number.
  • Count your fingers (after getting to know the five).
  • Story-thematic game "Houses". The parent draws a certain number of houses on a piece of paper in advance and asks the child to bring as many toys so that all of them can be “populated” and not a single empty house remains.
  • Mushroom game. The parent places “mushrooms” (pictures, cubes) in the room in advance, the child takes a basket with him and goes out to collect, having found the first one, he says “one”, the second - “two”, and so on.

There are a lot of games, so every day you should offer your child something new. You can also study at the computer, asking the baby to count the number of objects on the screen.

Using various forms of work

To make it easier for the baby to memorize the numbers, it is important to visualize each of them. There are several ways to do this.

  • Print large pictures that depict the material being studied, and it is desirable that each number looks interesting, unusual (for example, a deuce in the form of a snake). Invite the child to color the picture with bright pencils, felt-tip pens, paints.
  • Another similar task is a coloring book, which shows the designated number (for example, five kittens) and there is a five next to it. The child paints the picture itself and the number, gradually memorizing. Over time, the task can be complicated: there is only a certain number of objects in the picture (4 apples), the kid paints them and prepares for the parent how many of them, what number to enter.
  • The child will complete this task with pleasure: he will look for familiar numbers everywhere - on the street in the numbers of houses, buses, cars, on billboards. Impatient parents will be annoyed by this desire, and wise mothers and fathers themselves will offer the baby a fun task - who will find more twos or ones during the walk. And, of course, an adult must definitely lose.

In order for a child to quickly comprehend the basics of counting, one should constantly say counting rhymes with numbers, for example: “One-two-three-four-five, we are going for a walk with you.” Such a simple text can be spoken before each walk, after a few times the child will be able to repeat it himself. Board games will also be useful: by throwing a die and counting the required number of steps on the playing field, the child will quickly learn to count.

Learning numbers with children at 3-4 years old is a very real task, but you will have to show your imagination by offering the crumbs all new options for exercises. Patience is also extremely important, because it will not be possible to carry out the plan the first time - perhaps some number will have to be given several classes. And this is normal, because each baby has its own level of development.

Chief editor of the Razvivashka Online project on early childhood development

About the expert

Olga is an active mother who is passionate about child development. Author of a course on developmental care and educational games, cards, author and editor of articles on early development and features of child neuropsychology.

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How to teach a child to count


Learning numbers with a child and teaching him to count is not an easy task. But any parent knows that you need to get acquainted with mathematics at a preschool age. If a kid at 5-6 years old masters the composition of the number and counting within ten, then it is more likely that at school it will be easier for him to cope with tasks.

How to interest a child in mathematics?

First, follow the basic rules:

    1. It is better to learn numbers and numbers not at the table, but in the game or immediately in practice. For example, have the child count the ingredients for a cake or a button on a shirt.
    2. Practice when the baby is in a good mood. Try to evoke positive emotions in him. So the information is better remembered.
    3. First, choose easy examples so that the child can cope with them. And when he successfully masters the first task, he will definitely want to repeat the success. At the same time, do not forget to praise the child.
    4. Practice constantly, each time using something new. This is how you maintain interest and form a habit.
    5. If the child fails to solve the task - do not get annoyed, but try to explain in practice. After all, the main thing in 5 years is not to learn the basics of mathematics, but to form an interest in studying it in the future.

How to learn numbers:

Draw and hang in the child's room a number series from 1 to 20. It will always be in front of your eyes and will be remembered. Play the game of "jumping finger": point your finger in a chaotic order of the numbers from this row and ask for a number. Draw separate cards with numbers from 1 to 20 and ask the child to name them. In the first case, the baby remembers the ordinal arrangement of numbers, and in the second, he learns to recognize them randomly.

Make these cards: draw a number on dark cardboard with PVA glue, dip in semolina and dry. We work with these cards like this: the child circles the number with his finger as it should be written according to the rules, and pronounces the association aloud. For example, the number 1: first draw a tail with your finger from the bottom up, and then a straight stick down, saying: "Beak, leg." For numbers 2 - "Head, neck, tail"; 4 - "Back, seat, leg", etc. Come up with your own associations to better remember. In this exercise, children visually see the number, feel it tactilely, remember the spelling, speak out loud and reinforce it with associations.

You can get acquainted with the numbers and complete tasks online to consolidate knowledge on our website in the "Counting and Numbers" section.

How to teach counting:

In order for a child to learn to count, he must master the composition of the number, that is, understand that the number 5, for example, consists of a combination of the numbers 2 and 3, 1 and 4, etc. And for this, we first show the numerical value of the number 5 on real identical objects. For example, 5 is 5 spoons, apples, etc.

Play the game "Let's share" as often as possible. Take 5 sweets and offer to share between two. Ask the child: "How will we divide the sweets? How much will you take for yourself, and how much will you give to me?" Show that 5 sweets can be divided like this: 1 for mom, and 4 for baby, 2-3, 3-2, 4-1. And be sure to show that you are not counting empty numbers, but numbers that represent real candies.

You can also play this game: take 5 buttons (or other small items), first show the child that there are 5 of them, count with your finger. Then hide your palms with buttons behind your back and ask the child: “If I have 2 buttons in my right hand, how many in my left?” And then invite the kid to ask you a riddle. Guessing, sometimes "make mistakes" - children love to "catch" adults on mistakes.

Having mastered the composition of the number, the child will easily understand the basics of addition and subtraction.

Tasks for ordinal counting and comparison for preschoolers are recommended to be completed on the page "Assignments in mathematics for children 5-6 years old.

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