In preschool, educators teach basic counting concepts in a fun and exciting way. These skills lay the foundations for future math curricula and inspire an enthusiasm for learning. There are many easy ways to continue teaching preschool kids to count at home to help them learn and develop.
It is important to keep counting lessons short but frequent. Preschool children have a short attention span and can become overwhelmed or frustrated by long periods of learning. It is better to incorporate counting throughout your child’s day rather than one dedicated lesson time.
If possible, let your child touch and interact with the object you are counting. Including other senses like touch, smell, and sight into your counting lessons will keep your child engaged with and excited about what you are doing together.
Overall, remember to be patient and have fun! Teaching your preschool child to count should be a special and fulfilling moment of bonding between you.
Here are 8 easy ways that teachers and family members can teach preschool kids to count:
- Modeling Counting
There are many ways to model counting throughout your day. Try counting aloud how many snacks they have at lunch or the number of crayons they are colouring with. This method introduces counting concepts to your preschool child regularly, which allows them to internalize the lesson and reinforces what they’ve learned.
- Asking Ages
One way to start teaching your child numbers is to ask how old they are and show the correct number on your fingers. You can help your child show the same number on their own hands and say the number aloud. You may also include other family members or friends by having them demonstrate their age on their hands.
- Tower Blocks
Collect a bin of building blocks for your child and ask them to take one block out at a time, counting aloud. As you start to build a tower together, count each block. See how high your child can count while building the tallest tower. If it falls, they will likely want to build another taller one.
- Bouncing Balls
Bouncy balls are a great way to teach counting to preschool children, as they can touch the ball and throw it. Let your child bounce the ball and together count how many bounces the ball takes. This activity may be difficult for younger children, so make sure they are having fun.
- Animal Figurines
If your child has any animal figurines, you can invite your child to count how many legs each animal has. Some have 2 or 4, while others, like snakes, have none. It’s important to introduce the number 0 to your child since we usually start at 1 when counting.
- Block Numbers
Laying block, magnetic, or foam numbers out on the floor allows children to see the written number instead of only hearing it aloud or counting other objects. Encourage your child to put the numbers in the correct order. Remember to start small with numbers 1, 2 and 3 before introducing large numbers.
- Number Books
There are so many fun counting books for preschool children. From dinosaurs to soccer to unicorns, try to find a book that fits your child’s interests. Setting aside time to read with your child is important for their mental skills and creates a special moment together.
- Singing Songs
Songs like “One, Two, Buckle My Shoe” or “Five Speckled Frogs” are rhythmic and repetitive, which helps children to learn counting in an easy and fun way. Singing together won’t even feel like learning—but will help your preschool child build early math skills.
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