The activities and games we provide align with our Big Ideas of math and are tried-and-true ways to engage children in thinking about them. We don't offer a curriculum, but instead, we hope these selected activities will complement your current math teaching or at-home play, enriching your understanding of the Big Ideas in action, and serve as examples of simple, yet powerful math learning in preschool, kindergarten, and the primary years.
Whether it's story time, game time, or family time, we hope these ideas will complement your routines as well as bring out the Big Ideas that support a lifetime of mathematical thinking.
August 11, 2020
As children start using number words, they don’t always have a sense of what those words really mean. Early on, we guide children to develop a meaningful number sense by focusing on small numbers.
Quantity is a particular amount of something, expressed as a number. Quantity cards for young children can have pictures of small sets such as dots, finger patterns, or 5- or 10- frames. The ones we have available on our site use a variety of pictures or "suits," since matching quantities such as fingers and dots can help develop ideas about equivalence.
Card games provide meaningful practice of the basic number combinations. These common card games that children learn in school or at home can be revisited many times and can be adapted to children’s own math skills as they develop over time.
Activities related to counting books can spark a lot of conversation and creativity. These English and Spanish-language activity cards are great for printing and using at home and school.
Books can illustrate kindergarten and preschool shape concepts while introducing foundational Big Ideas of math. These activity cards can help take the learning to the home environment where parents and caregivers can spark such discussion.
These printable activity cards in both English and Spanish invite home explorations with sets and sorting using the books and activities related to them. The books can encourage conversations about attributes while also inspiring questions about what is happening from page to page.
In both English and Spanish, the directions here outline how to do an activity at home that can allow parents to involve themselves with the learning taking place in classrooms, all tied to the book Five Creatures.
Here you can download cards and simple-to-learn game ideas to help young children build their understanding of early math concepts such as cardinality and composing and comparing numbers.
This game played with a hula hoop and bean bags demonstrates all the math that can be explored with a simple tossing game. Each round gives children practice seeing and naming smaller parts of a total number in a variety of ways.