Sunday, February 5, 2012

Valentine Math for Preschoolers

Preschoolers need lots of experience with sorting, counting, and patterning to develop their pre-math skills.  I love to make games for the preschoolers at my center to play.  Yes play, preschoolers learn through play, not ditto sheets.  So every skill you want them to learn needs to be in the form of a hands on, fun, sensory stimulating activity.  I am going to show you some of the activities I will be using with the preschoolers at my school during Valentines.  First you will need to cut about a bajillion hearts in various sizes and colors.  If you are lucky like me, you will find an organization that has an Ellison die cut machine (thanks M-Y Partnership for Children) and use the hound out of it.
The first game is a matching game.  Using black construction paper cut into 4ths, glue at least one pair of matching hearts per color to the paper.  If you make more than one pair of the same color it gives your children a greater opportunity for successfully finding a match.  But whatever you do don't use an odd number of colored cards or you will cause much frustration because they will never be able to  a match. Lol.

Here is a picture of all the hearts I cut and then laminated for extra durability.

With this pile of hearts, you can sort by size.  I have a small size, a medium, and a large.

Next I used a dry erase marker and wrote numbers on the large hearts and then you have the children count out the number of hearts indicated on the big heart.  The dry erase marker wipes off easily with a dry cloth on laminated items.  This way you can reuse the hearts of another activity.  You also see an example of sorting by color in this picture.

This picture shows patterning.  I used a sentence strip and added the hearts in a repeating pattern.  I used the simplest pattern in the example above.
This pattern is a little more difficult and would be used with your older preschoolers.

This would be the most challenging of the three patterning activities because they would have to chose the right color and the right size heart. 

I hope you found something you can use with the preschoolers in your life.  Thanks for reading.  Would love to hear from you and your activities.

Ephesians 1:16


  1. what a great idea - I love teaching patterns to my kids, and this is a great way to do it - very inspired - well done!

  2. What great play lessons. Thank you for sharing it at Sharing Saturday! Have a great week!

  3. What a fun project!! I can't wait for my daughter to be old enough for these kinds of projects!!

    Thanks for linking up!! I love coming over here and seeing your "thangs" (suppers and youngans included!). ;-)