There are lots of fun ways to implement maths activities EYFS (Early Years Foundation Stage) at home during lockdown. We've listed 15 fun preschool EYFS maths activities in this article to help your little ones with learning their numbers.
Bingo is a great activity for preschool children. Bingo activities help children learn numbers in an engaging and exciting way. You can make your own Bingo sheets by creating grids of any number of squares on an A4 piece of paper; 9 squares (3 x 3) is usually a good number to start with. You can then ask you little ones to choose their numbers or you can choose for them. Then call out questions that will match the numbers on their grid. For example, if they have a 4 on their Bingo grid, call out either 'what is two plus two' or 'how many legs on this chair' or for an easier round just call out 'number 4'. To help keep interest, you could introduce prizes for when the Bingo grid is complete and invite friends and family to play virtually.
- A4 paper
- some pens and pencils
- some counters or stickers to stamp off numbers (optional)
Playdough Counting And Matching Game
Preschool math activities involving playdough also help your little ones practice fine motor skills. For this activity, all you need is some playdough.
Roll the playdough into little balls and put them into groups of different amounts, make corresponding numbers out of the playdough for each group of balls that match the amount. For example, make one group of seven balls and shape a number '7' out of the playdough. Make around 5 different pairs and then ask your child to match the groups of balls with the numbers by counting up the balls.
This game can also be played in reverse and your child can count the balls and then help you shape the playdough into the shape of the number. These kinds of preschool math activities will improve fine motor skills and is great for learning number recognition.
Playdough Shape And Number Recognition Game
This activity is similar to the playdough activity above, so it's a great addition whilst you have the playdough out to let your little ones use their fine motor skills for longer. For this version, you'll need more than one colour of playdough. Create lots of different coloured playdough shapes, enough to create groups of matching shapes and colours. Once you have done this you can ask your child to collect different types; for example, you could ask for '5 blue ones of any shape' or '2 circles of any colour' or '3 green squares'. This is a fun way to help them learn their shapes while they learn to count. We have more playdough maths activities here.
'Please Can You Bring Me...' Game
This numbers game for kids is a fun way to help preschoolers learn counting skills. For this game you use objects from around your home, so you won't need anything in particular. For this game, you simply ask your little one to bring you a number of items. For example, 'please can you bring me 5 of your toys' or 'please can you bring me 3 cushions'. This game is a really fun way to help your child learn to count and is similar to a scavenger hunt. To make the game really exciting, you can have a prize at the end for bringing you all the items, and a bonus prize for putting them away again!
Make A Magic Potion Smoothie!
This activity is especially great for the garden when the sun is shining! For this activity you'll need a blender or something that can make smoothies. You can follow the example recipe below, tweak it, or make your own; just include lots of different quantities to help your little ones count. Get your little ones to collect the ingredients in a big bowl, if you have any edible fruit or plants in the garden like blackberries or mint, these are great to add these to the recipe. Then once all the ingredients are collected, blend them all together for a super tasty treat!
Items needed for the Magic Potion Smoothie (serves 2):
- 5 big strawberries
- 15 blueberries
- 10 raspberries
- 1 banana
- 2 teaspoons of honey
- 4 dessert spoons of natural yoghurt.
- (Some cows or plant-based milk to make it as thick or as runny as you like - we recommend around 100-200 ml)
Jigsaw Pieces Pairs
On rectangular cards, draw some dots on one side and the corresponding number on the other. Cut these cards into two, making sure you cut in zigzags, curves and wavy lines so that your little ones can easily connect the two cards on the floor or on the table. He or she can count the dots and identify the numbers to help match the pairs together.
- paper or card
- pens or pencils
If you have access to Lego or other blocks suitable for preschoolers, you can use them to do some preschool math activities. Give your child a task to build a stack of blocks with one green block, two red blocks, and three blue blocks. You can make this activity as simple as you choose and you can help your child with drawings, or identical stacks for your child to copy.
- Lego blocks or any other play building blocks
- colouring pencils and paper to give your child visual aid
Missing Number Game
Write the numbers 1-10 in a line missing one number. Your child can then identify which number is missing. If you want to make the game more challenging, cut out the numbers and jumble up them up, leaving out one number, and see if your little one can identify the missing number.
Bake Some Treats
Simple baking activities for preschoolers are a perfect way to use and build number skills, and leaves you with a tasty treat at the end! This Smartie cookie recipe for kids is perfect for lockdown and you can implement hands-on preschool math activities within the process. Ask your little ones to help count the Smarties for each cookie dough ball and to do some of the easier measurements. This will make the end product even more exciting!
Learn Through Music
Songs are a great way to help your little ones with their maths and numbers. There are lots of useful numbers songs online that help your child develop their preschool math skills. Use these fantastic songs as a starting point.
Play A Board Game
Board games for preschool children are a great way to continue to build you little ones maths skills. Any games with dice such as Snakes and Ladders or The Shopping List Game will encourage your child to count how many places they need to move their counter. Games like Connect 4 will also allow your child to practice learning to count.
Playing games like Snap or Pairs are a fun way to practice number recognition. You can also play a tweaked version of these games by creating pairs of cards, one with dots and one with the number, so your child can count the dots and match the number.
Buy A Height Chart
One brilliant maths activity EYFS children can do is to keep a height chart. You can buy height charts online or you might choose to make your own. Either way, your little ones will love keeping record of their height. It will get them used to seeing numbers and measuring things. They can measure their cuddly toys too.
Sorting activities are a great way for preschool activities to start learning about measurement and counting. These activities are more fun than they sound and you can use pretty much anything. Put your cuddly toys into size order or sort sweets or fruit in a bowl into separate colours.
Lots of children books encourage counting and maths learning for preschool years. The Very Hungry Caterpillar is a favourite classic of ours. There's no better activity than cuddling up and reading a good story together.
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Kidadl provides inspiration to entertain and educate your children. We recognise that not all activities and ideas are appropriate and suitable for all children and families or in all circumstances. Our recommended activities are based on age but these are a guide. We recommend that these ideas are used as inspiration, that ideas are undertaken with appropriate adult supervision, and that each adult uses their own discretion and knowledge of their children to consider the safety and suitability.
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