Merry Math Ideas for May
- Grades: PreK–K
Make math irresistible with three of my specialty themes popular with young children: a Counting Party, Frogs & Dogs, and The Price Is Right, Kindergarten Edition. Read on to find activity packages that make counting, number recognition, and money skills fun and exciting.
How Many Licks?
Students count how many licks it takes to get to the center of a Tootsie Pop by circling tally marks for every five licks.
I got this box cake at the party store. Students count the number of slices, sprinkles, and candles, as well as the balloons and soda bottle caps that are inside the slices.
Pop-O-Matic Trouble serves as the party game. Students pop the dome to roll the dice and move their pieces that many spaces.
Students attach tags to gift bags and boxes, and mark them with the number of pictures they count on the wrapping and the number of objects they count inside. To make greeting cards, they count out scratch & sniff stickers.
Do Me a Favor
Buy a large pack of party blowers (they should be used only once, and only one per child) and mark the insides with dots. When students blow the favors, their partners count the dots.
Students count pieces of confetti, and count pom-poms and pictures on party hats.
Frogs & Dogs
Students throw a bean bag frog on a numbered mat and count out that many plastic flies.
Lilly Pad Hop
One student holds up a numbered card, and their partner hops to the matching lilly pad. Optionally, you can use a frog instead of having partners.
By following a key, students spread chewed, colored gum on the right numbers to decorate a picture.
Feed the Puppies
Students roll a die, take out that many bone treats from a doggy bag, and place the bones in a dish.
Cut a picture into squares or strips, number them on the back or bottom, and have students put them in order.
The Price Is Right
At the start of the game, four students are called to "come on down" and stand in Contestant's Row. Each student tries to guess the price of a prize (a round number between $1 and $10). No two students can guess the same number. The child who guesses the closest to the actual price, without going over, gets to play a pricing game. If all four students overbid, they try again with a new prize. Play continues until all students get a chance to play a pricing game.
The font for the numbers is Sports Type. I attached Velcro on the back of each card and put a set of cards in each podium. If your sixes and nines look alike, I recommend marking them; as you can see in the picture, one of my students got hers mixed up.
The player lets a disc drop through the board to land in one of the bottom slots, where an item is sitting. He or she is then shown two numbers, one that is in the price and one that isn't. A correct guess earns a prize.
Easy as 1-2-3
A timer is set for 30 seconds. The player tries to guess the price of an item (a round number between $1 and $10), with the host answering "higher" or "lower" for each guess. If a price is guessed correctly before the time runs out, the player wins.
The player tries to purchase five items that equal $5.00 without going over. As each item is purchased, the host looks at the price on the bottom and adds it up on the cash register.
The player must complete addition problems. If an answer is incorrect, the host moves the mountain climber up one step. If the mountain climber takes more than ten steps, it falls off and the game is over.
The player rolls two large foam dice, one with numbers and one with dots. If the numbers rolled match, the player rolls again. If they do not match, the player must say how many more or fewer dots are needed. Play continues up to five rounds.
Showcase Showdown and Showcase
After every three pricing games, the players from those games try to spin the Big Wheel for a chance to go on to the final round. Here it’s a small version made out of a hamster wheel, but it’s still fun. Each player spins twice, and the student who spins the closest to a dollar without going over is the winner.
At the end of the game, the two students who spun the highest amounts in the Showcase Showdown get to compete for a final prize by guessing the price of their showcases (a round number between $10 and $20). The student who guesses the closest wins.
My students have a blast with math when they get to do these activities. How do you make math fun?
Have a merry weekend!
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