## Wednesday, June 9, 2010

### Young Children Early Mathematics Activities (share links)

Logical thinking Activities:

* classify blocks by size

* Sort crayons, markers, and pencils into containers

* Compare sets using more and less

* Sorting buttons, keys, coins, pasta, cereal, fabric or paper scraps, marbles, balls, stamps, postcards, jar lids, leaves, shells, playing cards, etc. and explaining why

* Sorting zoo and farm animals for storage

* Going on a shape or color hunt.

* Give children a small card with a number on it. Put a large number card on the floor and ask children with the matching card number to hop, jump, etc., then place their small number card on top of the big one. Continue until everyone matches their numbers.

Seriation Activities:

* Create graphs of snack time choices or how many kids walk or ride the bus

* Voting

* Differences in food

* Comparing number of sunny days, cloudy days, etc.

* Hang pieces of yarn in front of the room and ask which is the longest or which is the shortest. Have the kids arrange the yarn by lengths from shortest to longest

Measurement Activities:

* Measure shoes, height, length of table, etc. with yarn or hands

* Sizes of containers

* Blocks to build towers with length or height equal to other objects

* Number of steps it takes to get somewhere,

* Measure ingredients for cooking .

Shape Activities:

*Hunt for shapes throughout the room

* Pass around a shape and have children look at it and feel it with eyes open and closed

* Have children hunt for shapes in a magazine and paste them on a page

* Have the children make objects using a variety of shapes

* Have ten cutouts of all different shapes and envelopes with that shape in them, kids place shapes into their corresponding envelopes

* Trace shapes, then color them in

* Place one of each shape on a magnetic board or flannel board. Have the children look through a basket of shapes and place a shape next to its corresponding match

* Select several sheets of paper and draw one large shape (can also use numerals). Set out 20 inch long shoelaces or string. Invite the children to create the shapes or numerals by placing the laces on top of the shape or numeral on the construction paper sheets.

* Use pieces of masking tape to make large outlines on the floor of a circle, square, triangle, etc. Let the children take turns walking, crawling or hopping around the edges of the shapes. Or ask the child to first identify the shape before walking around it.

Numeral Activities:

* Have the children tell how many of each body parts they have. How many noses? How many eyes, ears, chins, fingers, etc.

* Select five index cards. On the left-hand side of each, write a numeral from 1 to 5. Then, on the right side, punch a matching number of holes with a hole punch. Let the children take turns counting the number of holes in the cards and naming the matching numerals. For older children, give them paper squares with numerals and let them punch out matching numbers of holes.

* For each child cut the numeral 1 to 5 out of posterboard. Set out glue and small objects, such as buttons, toothpicks, cotton balls and circle stickers. Help them glue matching numbers of small objects on their posterboard numerals. (1 toothpick for the numeral 1, 2 buttons for the numeral 2, etc.)

* Cut five apple shapes out of cardboard. Cut one finger hole in the first shape, two in the second, and so on. Color the apple shapes red and mark each one with the numeral that matches the number of holes in it. Let your children take turns choosing an apple shape, sticking their fingers through the holes and then naming the number of "worms" they see.

* Number the inside bottoms of six paper baking cups from 1 to 6. Place the baking cups in a 6-cup muffin tin. Give a child a box containing 21 counters (pennies, small buttons, beans, etc.). Have the child identify the numerals in the bottoms of the paper baking cups and drop in the corresponding numbers of counters.

* Divide a paper plate into six equal sections and label the sections from one to six by drawing on sets of dots. Write a numeral from 1 to 6 on each of six spring-type clothespins. Let the children take turns clipping the clothespins to the matching numbered sections on the circle.

* Select five index cards. Write a numeral from 1 to 5 on each card. Give the cards to a child along with 15 paper clips. Have the child choose one card at a time, name the numeral and then attach that number of paper clips to the card.

* Make a blank book for each child by stapling 10 pieces of white paper together with a colored paper cover. Write "My Counting Book" and the child's name on the front. Number the pages in the book from 1 to 10. Let your children look through magazines or catalogs and tear or cut out small pictures. Then have them glue one picture on the first page of their books, two pictures on the second page and so on.

Opposites Activities:

* rough and smooth-use rocks, fabric squares, etc.

* hard and soft

* Use boxes for the following opposites: big/little

* open/closed

* light/heavy

* thick/thin

* full/empty

* wide/narrow

* many/few

* far/near

* first/last

Pattern Activities:

* Look for patterns on leaves

* Working with simple patterns in their bead and block construction

* Building patterns with two colors of Unifix cubes or pattern blocks

* Constructing a pattern with two colors of napkins at snack time

* Clapping the rhythms of their name

* Coloring every second or fifth or tenth day on a calendar of days in school

* Exploring patterns in wallpaper

* Create patterns using sponge printing, collage materials, geometric shapes or wrapping or wall paper

* Find patterns on the United States flag

Color Activities:

* Glue a colored button to the bottom of a 6 cup muffin tin, using 6 different colors in each tin. (Have the same number and same color of buttons off to the side.) Encourage the children to match the colored buttons to the ones in the tins.

* Try guessing how many of the same colored buttons, beads, etc., there are in a glass jar, then count to see who came the closest.

* Cut red, yellow and blue cellophane into desired shapes. Have the children glue the shapes on sheets of waxed paper, overlapping the edges of the cellophane as they glue. Attach construction paper frames to the collages, if desired. Then hand them in the window to let the light shine through all the colors.

* For each child put a small amount of red liquid tempera paint and a small amount of yellow into a Ziploc storage bag. Seal the bags closed. Then let the children squeeze their bags to mix the colors and create orange. Follow the same procedure using blue and yellow paint to make green; red and blue paint to make purple, etc.

* Cut a 12-inch circle out of white tagboard and divide it into eight sections. Use crayons of markers to color each section a different color and draw matching colored dots on eight spring-type clothespins. Then let the children match the colors by clipping the clothespins around the edge of the wheel on the appropriate sections.

* Cut two squares each out of six different colors of construction paper and glue the squares on twelve index cards. Mix up the cards and spread them out face down on a table. Let one child begin by turning up two cards. If the colors match, let the child keep the cards. If they don't, have the child replace both cards face down exactly where they were before. Continue until all the cards have been matched. Then let the child who ended up with the most cards have the first turn when you start the game again.

* Use red, yellow and blue yarn to form three circles on a carpet (or cut circles out of construction paper). Set out red, yellow and blue wooden beads. Then let the children sort the beads by placing them inside the matching colored circles.

* Cut six squares out of different colors of construction paper and insert them in the sides of a plastic photo cube. Do the same to a second cube, using the same colors. Then let the children move the cubes around to find the matching pairs of colors. For variation, use one cube as a color die. Let the children take turns rolling the die and then naming the color that comes up.

* On a piece of paper for each child, attach several different colored self-stick dots in a row to start a pattern (red, blue, red, blue; orange, yellow, green, orange, yellow green, etc.) Then give the children more dots and let them continue the pattern across their papers. When they have finished, start a new pattern on each paper, if desired.

* Turn a shoebox upside down and cut two parallel rows of slits in the top. Draw different colored dots on the ends of one set of tongue depressors and matching colored dots on the ends of another set. Insert one set of sticks in one of the rows of slits. Then let the children insert matching colored sticks from the second set in the appropriate slits in the other row.

* Make colored eyeglasses by cutting frames out of desired color of tagboard and glue matching colored cellophane squares over the eyeholes. (Use red, yellow and blue and combine the colors to make green, orange an purple.) Then attach pipe cleaners to the sides of the frames and bend them to fit over the children's ears.

* Place a small mirror in a glass of water and tilt it against the side of the glass. Stand the glass in direct sunlight so that the mirror reflects a rainbow on the wall. Name the colors with the children (red, orange, yellow, green, blue and purple). Explain that sunlight contains all these colors mixed together, but when it hits the water (or raindrops in the sky), all the colors are separated.

* Cut large squares out of selected colors of construction paper and spread them out on the floor. Then ask the children to perform different actions by giving directions such as: "Jason, can you put your foot on a red square? Brian, can you jump over a purple square?" Finally, ask everyone to find a square to stand on and let each child name the color of his or her square.

* Cut small matching squares out of different colors of construction paper. Place the squares in a paper bag and have each child draw out a square. Play music and let the children move around the room to find their "color partners" by matching up their colored squares. Then have them hold hands with their partners and circle around the room. After everyone has joined the circle, stop the music, collect the squares and start the game again.