Friday, June 19, 2015


Preschool Math With Wiggly Eyes

Preschool math is most fun and easiest to learn when your kiddos are playing!  Today I'm sharing a super easy and super fun way to practice counting...with wiggly eyes!

If you haven't had a chance to read how preschoolers' brains work, make sure you check out this post.  It explains why fun "play" activities (like wiggly eye math) help children learn!

We've been working on counting from 11-20 a lot.  Counting from 1-10 (and even from 20-50!) was easy, but we keep mixing up numbers around thirteen and fourteen.  I have a ton of wiggly eyes at home, so when we went on an extended camping trip, I put a bag-full of them into my backpack.  I had the perfect math activity for when my kiddo inevitably decided he needed something to do!

To set your own preschool math activity, simply sprinkle the wiggly eyes across a sandy area and then cover them with a few handfuls of sand.  

I told my son we had some "monsters" leave some strange things behind the tent, and that he would need to excavate some sand to figure out what was going on.  (Obviously if your kiddos actually worry about monsters, use a different game scenario!)  He loved "digging" up the eyes and counting them!  

He even made up different tpes of monsters (some have 1 eye, some have 2 eyes, etc!).  His sisters saw him playing in the sand with the eyes, and wanted to join in too!  This was even more wonderful because my older daughter counted flawlessly for her two younger siblings.  

When you're done, go ahead and build some sand monsters!

If you're at home or school you can make the monsters into an art project by gluing the sand and eyes to a piece of construction paper!

If you're not camping, you could easily do this in your back yard, in a sensory bin, or in a mess-free sealed baggie or plastic tube (you may want to add duct tape to mess-free baggies and tubes to make sure the sand doesn't escape!).  It's a great outdoors game for nice spring and summer days!

You can also extend the activity for older and advanced children with questions like, "If all the monsters had three eyes, how many monsters were there?" "What if all the monsters had two eyes?"

Do your kiddos love craft supplies?  They're loads of fun for all kinds of learning!  Be sure to check out the other math-learning ideas with common manipulatives at School Time Snippets!

Wait!  There's more math!!

If you're looking for more preschool math ideas, be sure to see our preschool math with trains, nuts and bolts more or less game, preschool math with Valentine's candy, Dr. Seuss-inspired preschool math activities, teaching math skills through play, math and more with pom-poms, and sports hide and seek graphing!  Or just type key words like "math" or "graph" into the search bar near the top of the page on the right hand side (right above "popular posts")!    

I may share at any of these parties!

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Kristina said...

Such a creative idea to put them in the sand! So fun!

Carla at Preschool Powol Packets said...

Thanks Kristina!! The sand was amazing!!