Kids seem to enjoy matching upper and lowercase letters so much in this homemade letter matching game, that I decided to try something similar with numbers. Admittedly, this number matching game a little more tedious if the child has not yet made the connection that a 2 digit number can be broken up into it’s tens component and units component (i.e. 25 is two tens plus five units). The Montessori Golden Beads and Montessori Number Symbol Cards are another way to teach this concept. However, once your child starts to get the hang of it, this is a quick and easy activity that your child can do on his or her own after you set up the “game”. The fact that they get to move around while they complete the task is an added bonus for many kids.
Recommended Age Range: Preschool, Kindergarten
Time Required: ~2 hours
Difficulty: Easy (though drawing all those dots gets to be a bit of a pain).
Cost: Less than $5 in used supplies.
- Homemade Number Cards (optional)
- blank index cards
- contact paper
Supplies & Tools:
- If you have not already made the Homemade Number Cards, write the numbers you want to help teach on a blank index card. I went up to 30.
- Draw dots corresponding to the same set of numbers on separate index cards. I think it makes the most sense to draw the dots in rows of 10, so that the child can start to learn to associate the fact that 23, for example, is two rows of 10 plus 3 extra. To do this easily, I made a reference card as shown below. Since I used 3″x5″ cards, I drew my reference dots 1/2″ apart starting 1/4″ from the edge (so I drew tick marks at 1/4″, 3/4″, 1 and 1/4″, 1 and 3/4″, all the way to 4 and 3/4″)
- “Laminate” the cards with contact paper or with a laminator.
- Trim the edges of the laminated cards.
To play, tape all the number cards up on a wall in order. Then tape all the dot cards nearby in a big jumble. Have the child move all the dot cards and tape them underneath the appropriate written number card. The advantage of using the Homemade Number Cards is that they already have the answer on the back, so if the child wants to check that they found the right number, they can flip the card up and make sure the dots match.
Click here for more Counting and Number Recognition activities for kids.
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