Math in Kindergarten

In kindergarten math, children learn the names of numbers and how to count them in order. They begin to become familiar with numbers 11-19 to gain a foundation for place value. They begin to identify shapes, compare measurable attributes, they start to learn the concepts of addition and subtraction, respectively, as “putting together and adding to” and “taking apart and taking from,”

Overall, Kindergarten math introduces them to make sense of problems, reason abstractly and quantitatively, look for and make use of structure, attend to precision, according to the Common Core State Math Standard.


Learning numbers is a foundational element of early childhood education. But, teaching number to a kindergartner can be tricky. Let me tell you this: your child is secretly learning and exploring number on their own through pattern recognition, musical beats, your conversations, etc. Now, she is ready to understand and learn numbers through activities, games, to daily routines.

Benefits of teaching numbers to kindergarten

Teaching kindergarteners to count will improve their readiness for other math concepts that will be taught in the future, such as addition and subtraction. For example, tell your child how old he is while holding up the correct number of fingers. Then ask him to do the same. If your child is not ready to model this behavior, simply continue to occasionally show him. Eventually, he will hold up the correct number of fingers. When he does, say, “That’s right!”

Remember to keep these teaching activities fun and carefree. The object here is to demonstrate and model concepts until your child internalizes them and can model them back. Pushing or scolding are not appropriate, as they will cause anxiety in your child and are to be avoided. Children develop at their own rates, and when they are ready, they will learn and respond.

PART ONE: Say Hi! to Numbers

 1) Say numbers in the day – to – day activities

Sensitizing children to numbers is the foundation of developing the concept of number in them. It is important to know that they understand how numbers are always around them. Bring up numbers in conversations.

For example:

” You put on ONE t-shirt”

“Let me give you FOUR mini pancakes and 2  strawberries”

“You both go and sit on those TWO chairs”

2) Introduce numbers

To begin with, write down numbers, from one to ten on a whiteboard or on a piece of paper. Use placards, flashcards to introduce numbers to kids. Pick out cards and say the number out loud. Let the child repeat after you.

3) Take one number at a time

Many children learn best when they can visualize a concept. For each number, write the number itself and a drawing that represents it. If you reach number 2, for example, draw two eyes, two apples, or two flowers.

For example:

” Place TWO with an image of eyes“: every time the child looks at eyes, she thinks of 2.

“Place EIGHT along with an image of Octopus”: Every time she looks at a picture of an octopus, she thinks of 8.

4) Show children how to write numbers

When you discuss a number, make sure to discuss how to write it correctly. Let them try to write numbers themselves. You can use creative and entertaining ways to write numbers. A little bit of silliness and fun goes a long way to cementing the numbers into the child’s memory. For older preschoolers, simply write the numbers in pencil and have your child trace them with a marker. It’s a smart way to boost his fine-motor skills and his knowledge of numbers.

For example:

” Make them practice writing numbers again and again on worksheets.”

” Tell kids that number 1 has a skinny line for a body and a forward slash for a big nose.”


PART TWO: Repeat it

“Repetition is the mother of learning, the father of action, which makes it the architect of accomplishment.”, Zig Ziglar

You can support your child by providing them with opportunities to repeat activities that interest them.  Practicing helps them remember, recollect, and recognize concepts for longer periods of time.


Rhymes help children remember how to form the numbers. Teach rhymes to the children and encourage them to recite them as they work on practicing writing their numbers.

for example:

“Making a straight line is fun, and now you have a one”

” Down and over, down once more, that’s the way you get a four”


Your next step to introduce your kid to number is by bringing in the neighborhood. Use the help of billboards, trucks, mailboxes, curbs, doorways, and signs.

For example:

” The next time you go out with your child for a walk, keep your eyes

at numbers and take turns calling them out.”


When clean-up time rolls around, don’t just scoop up the toys and whisk them away. Use the few minutes to stimulate some math mastery. Making an activity such as cleaning your room into a practice exercise. It is a chore that the child cannot get rid of. Mixing math and numbers with it only make that also inevitable.

For example:

“Count the number of socks in your drawer.”

” Tell me the number of hair bands you own.”

PART THREE: Play now

Most math-traumatized adults don’t realize how creative and inventive mathematics can be. Creative mathematics doesn’t always make it into the classroom. So, I have come up with a list of games that are creative, fun, exciting, and full of learning:

1) Count the Cups

You need:

  • White paper cups
  • Sketch Pens
  • Small objects like beads

How to play:

  1. Number the cups from zero to 11. Make sure that the digit is visible on the surface of the cup.
  2. Give the cups to the kid and ask her to arrange them in order from the smallest number to the biggest.
  3. Now give her the 55 beans and ask her to see the number written on the cup and put that number of beans in the cup.
  4. Once she is done putting the beans in the cup, let her empty each cup and see if she placed the right number of beans in each cup.

You learn:

  • Counting
  • Number recognition

2) Rock, Paper, Number

You need:

  • Nothing at all

How to play:

  1. The game is played like rock, paper, scissors. Only that instead of rock or paper or scissors, which is just two fingers, you can show a number.
  2. On the count of three, you and your child can put up as many fingers as you want.
  3. Then ask the kid to count the number of fingers you are showing and how many he has.
  4. The first player to call out the number wins!

You learn:

  • Counting

3) Decode the Dice

You need:

  • A pair of dice
  • A sheet of paper
  • Pens

How to play:

  1. On a sheet of paper or chart, write the numbers from two to 12.
  2. Ask the child to roll the dice and count the dots facing up and circle the number on the sheet.
  3. You can place two such sheets and whoever completes is able to circle all the numbers on the sheet wins!

You learn:

  • Counting

4) Hopscotch Numbers

You need:

  • Space to play outdoors
  • Chalk

How to play:

  1. Draw the cat’s cradle version of Hopscotch court – the numbers are written in a sequence, from one to ten.
  2. Call out the number one and ask the kid to jump on the numbered square.
  3. You can call the numbers in a sequence or random order, just to see if the child can identify the numbered square.

You learn:

  • Number recognition

5) Matching Play Cards

You need:

  • A deck of playing cards

How to play:

  1. Sort out all the cards and take out cards two to ten from all the suits.
  2. From these, tape the cards of one suit on a wall, in a random order.
  3. Arrange the rest of the suits on a table nearby, in order.
  4. Ask the child to pick a card from the deck on the table and slap it on the matching number on the wall!
  5. You can try matching all the cards with your kid and note how much time it took you two to complete the task together.
  6. The next time you play, aim at completing the game faster than the last time.
  7. You can also compete with your child. The one who matches all the cards first wins!

You can use tape to stick the cards together.

You learn:

  • Number recognition

Children are quick learners, and they can grasp concepts with ease. Introducing the number to kindergartners in a fun way will help them understand numbers easily. Pre-schoolers tend to memorize the number. Try to use Outnumber family card to introduce the concept of number. However, they will gradually begin to understand what the numbers mean when you relate the number of everyday objects to the numbers. Each child is unique and learns at her own pace. Therefore, it is advisable to avoid comparing the learning abilities of different children.