Category : Math


Hands-on Learning Games: Teach Your Child Numbers

This a simple game that your child will ask to play again and again. The great thing about it is that it can be used not only for learning quantity and numbers, but also for beginning addition.

Children especially like the fact that it uses money; they feel as if they’ve fallen into quite a windfall of money!


- 6 sheets of red cardboard (standard size)

- 45 pennies, plus a small container to store them in

Make the Game:

1) Cut 5 of the sheets of cardboard in half. You’ll have ten half-sheets.

2) On each one, write a number (0-9). The number should fill only about half to two-thirds of the sheet.

3) Underneath each number, draw the number of circles represented by each number. So the number 1 has one circle, 2 has two circles, and so on. Leave the number zero empty. Use a penny as a stencil for drawing the circles. (In the picture above the circles are colored red – that’s optional).

4) Now cut the last sheet of cardboard in half length-wise.

5) Now write the numbers 0-9 from left to right. Your child will use this to help him lay out the numbers in order on his own.

How to Play:

1) Place the card with the zero down in front of your child. Say, ‘this is zero,” and point to the zero.

2) Now take the card with the number one, and lay it to the right of the zero card. Say, “this is one.” Now take out one penny, place it in your child’s palm, saying “one” as you do so.

3) Show them where to place the penny on the card. Have them say “one” as they place the money on the circle.

4) For the first session, do up until number 2. Every two days or so you can add on a new number. At the start of each session, review the names of the numbers.

5) After you’ve reviewed the numbers for a few days, ask your child to show you “the 2 (or a different number). This is easier for your child than pointing to a number and asking them to tell you what the number is; you’ll do this only after your child can successfully point to the number you name.

6) In a few weeks, your child will have learned:

  • one-on-one correspondence (one circle gets one penny)
  • how to count consecutively
  • a number represents a particular quantity (the number 2 represents two items).
  • to recognize and name numbers

all in one game!


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Hands-on Learning Games: Animal Coverings Sorting Game

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This hands-on learning game is a great way for kids to learn about the different types of coverings animals have. The extra set-up of close-up cards challenge children to identify the animal in addition to its’ covering. Plus, your child can play the game with another child, racing against a clock to see who finishes sorting their cards first.


-          4 close-up pictures of fur, feathers, scales, and a shell.

-          Pictures of : turtle, lobster, snail, starfish, crab, crayfish

Bear, tiger, rabbit, deer, mouse, monkey

Chicken, ostrich, duck, sparrow, peacock, parakeet

Snake, komodo dragon, green lizard, angelfish, butterfly, gecko lizard

Close-ups of each of the above animals that show only one small part

How to Play:

  1. Place the 4 category pictures (fur, feathers, scales, and shell) in a row horizontally.
  2. Mix up the cards, putting them all in a pile, face-down.
  3. Have your child draw a card.
  4. The child then places the card underneath the correct category.

The close-up cards should be matched in the same way.


You can have your child play this game together with another child. Simply give each child two category cards, and see who can finish sorting their cards first. Children on two different levels can play also; one child places the close-ups while the other places the regular pictures.

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Hands-on Learning Games: Teach Your Child the Months of the Year in Less Than a Week

Is your child struggling with memorizing the months of the year? Often children with a delay in language development have difficulty with concepts involving time. Younger children have trouble with using words like “yesterday” and “tomorrow” appropriately; you may find your child asking you when yesterday’s baseball game will be.

Older children, even well into middle school, may struggle with knowing what day of the week comes before Sunday, or what month a particular holiday falls out on. You may find that even your tween struggles with remembering the order of the months of the year.

This hands -on learning game will help your child learn the months of the year, as well as improve her sequencing skills, which are at the root of her difficulties with concepts involving time.  It can also be adapted to suit children and teens of all ages.


-Print out two copies of a paper with name of the month on top and the picture associated with it on the bottom. Take one copy of each month, and cut it in half. That will leave you with one set of pictures with both the name of the month and its picture, PLUS a set of labels with the name of the month, and a set of labels with only pictures.

Examples of pictures for each month include: January-New Year’s Day, February-Valentine’s Day, March-wind, April-flowers, May-rain, June-last day of school, July-Fourth of July, August-hot day, September-first day of school, October-Halloween, November-Thanksgiving, December- winter, or holiday.)

* You can use your child’s picture for the month their birthday falls out on. Also, if you can’t think of a picture, simply let your child pick out a picture that they like.

How to Play:

1. Choose a large space to work at so you will have plenty of space to spread out the materials.

2. Place the copies with the months and the pictures cut out to the side. You don’t need them yet.

3. Place the page for January on the table before your child. Say the name of the month clearly, and point to the picture (no need to name the picture).

3. Do the same thing with the next month.

4.  After 2 or 3 months, mix up the pages, and ask your child to put them back in order. If she can read, she should name the months after she has placed the pages in order. If not, then you can say the names of the months and have her repeat after you.

5.   Continue until you’ve completed all the months of the year, making sure to stop after every 2-3 pages. You have a choice whether or not to require your child to remember previous pages. It really depends on how hard or easy it is for your child. So, for example, if your child can easily remember months 1-2, then when you do months 3-4 you can ask them to order the pages from months 1-4, all at once.

If this is hard for your child, you can have them do only months 1-2, then 3-4, and so on. As they get better at it you can slowly increase the number of months they remember at one time.

7.  Continue until your child can recite the names of the months in order forwards and backwards.

TIP:  Younger children can simply match the cut out pictures with the complete pages. In that case as they place the picture they can call out the name of the month that goes with it.

Children who can read can sequence the names of the months only. This would be step number 8.

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