One-to-one correspondence counting can be a challenging math skill to teach in preschool classrooms. Where rote counting involves teaching students how to recite numbers, one-to-one correspondence is the not-so-simple activity of touching an object and identifying its numeral aloud. Learning math skills like one-to-one correspondence can be made easier by using fun activities. We’ve put together 25 fun games and activities that will help you teach this mathematical skill during meaningful lessons. Happy teaching!
1. Counting Animals
Kindergarten students love vibrant colors and cute animals. Find some animal figurines or erasers and have students place the animals on a worksheet that already depicts predetermined spots for their furry friends. Hands-on experiences like these will make for amazing preschool lessons and will also teach your learners crucial skills that they will need as they grow up.
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2. Counting With Pegs Or Clips
When teaching counting and correspondence skills, helping your students practice their hand-eye coordination is a bonus! This learning game is an exciting activity where students will clip a peg onto a slip of paper that has a certain amount of dots or shapes on it.
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3. Teach With Building Blocks
Fun math activities and correspondence games that incorporate 3D shapes and block figures – such as Lego – will help with child development. Make the daunting task of learning one-to-one correspondence easier when you have your students build a Lego tower made out of as many blocks as you’d like.
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4. Activities with Stickers
Have your students stick colorful stickers onto a worksheet. This concrete learning experience will teach your students one-to-one correspondence quickly.
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5. Make Use Of Their Favorite Household Items
One-to-one correspondence can also be taught using facets of your learner’s personal life. Ask your students to bring their favorite teddies or toys to class and have them practice the math skill by counting their toys. Moving the toys about will also help with eye-hand coordination.
6. Teach Through Drawing
Another independent activity that will give your students extra practice in this essential skill involves giving them homework. Give them a worksheet that has several blocks with numbers printed on them and ask them to draw the corresponding amount of apples on a tree, or animals on a farm.
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7. Correct Placement
Use cardboard muffin containers or ice cube trays and have your learners practice placing small items into the spaces that are labeled with numbers. Food items such as smarties or colored buttons can be used.
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8. Leverage The Power of Playdough
This activity is both practical and fun for younger children. Have your students roll playdough to fit the contours of a number on a card or have them roll up little balls or flowers to match the number on the worksheet.
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9. Counting With Playing Cards
Gather buttons and a playing card deck. Lay the cards out and have your preschoolers match the number of buttons to the number on the card. Once your learners have the hang of this activity, hold a mini-competition to see who can do it the fastest.
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10. Ice Cream Counting Mats
Collect some colorful pompoms and make ice cream cones using cardboard. Write a number on each slip of paper and then place them in a bowl. Have each student in your preschool class place the correct number of “ice cream scoops” onto each cone.
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11. Fishbowl Fun
Using fish-shaped crackers, have your preschoolers place the correct number of crackers onto a fishbowl-shaped piece of paper. Place numbers 1 to 9 in the corner of the fishbowl so that your students can easily match their crackers to the number. You can build habitats for all kinds of animal crackers to shake this exercise up.
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12. Feed Your Toys
Have your preschoolers bring up to ten of their favorite small toys to class. Next, have them place their toys on special spots marked 1 to 10. Then, give them popcorn kernels and have them feed their toys with the right amount of food.
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13. Squish And Squash
This tactile exercise is sure to keep your young learners engaged. Roll homemade, non-toxic playdough into balls and lay them out on a desk for your preschoolers. Next, have them take turns pressing each ball down with their finger while they count them.
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14. Turtle Time
Get super creative and make DIY tortoise sheets for your students out of paper and 2-liter plastic bottle tops. You could even get your students to make part of their own sheets. Lastly, write numbers one through ten on the lids and have your students place the correct number of pompoms into the “turtle’s shell”.
15. Join The Dots
Draw objects or use stickers to create a pattern on a piece of paper. Then, label each one from one to ten. You can then have your students connect the dots from one to two, from two to three, and so on, to help the practice their one-to-one correspondence skills.
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16. String Them Along
For this activity, you’ll need a few brightly colored beads and some pipe cleaners. Label each pipe cleaner with a wrap-around tag made from paper and glue. Then, have your students string the correct amount of beads onto each pipe cleaner.
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17. Planting Seeds
Getting your kids involved in a physical one-on-one correspondence activity will help them fully engage with the lesson. Use black beans or small stones as “soil” and colored pompoms or stones as “seeds”. Students can then put the correct number of seeds into each pot.
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18. Put It In A Pocket
All you need for this activity are some ice cream sticks and some envelopes. Place a number on each of the envelopes and stick them to the wall. Next, give your students a bowl of ice cream sticks. They can then place the right number of sticks into each envelope.
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19. Create Link Chains
Gather as many paper clips as you can find. Next, paint ice cream sticks with different hues and label them with a number. Learners can then create a chain of paper clips using the corresponding number of clips for each popsicle stick.
20. Use Dabber Dot Markers
These super fun pens can be put to good use to teach your preschooler one-to-one correspondence. Simply prepare a worksheet with numbers labeled down the left-hand side. Next, have each student use different colored markers to dab the correct number of dots next to each number.
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21. Do It With Dominoes
Dominoes are a wonderful resource to have in the classroom! This activity is a great way to advance your one-to-one correspondence activities. Set up a station with numbers laid out on pieces of paper. Then, have each student lay out the dominoes that display the correct number.
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22. Counting With Socks
Have each student take a turn lying on the ground. Have a peer place socks next to them in a straight line to see how tall their friend is in terms of socks!
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23. Yummy Counting Mat
Make counting mats in the shape of hot chocolate cups and have your students place the correct number of marshmallows in each cup; going according to what the number on the mug says. To make it even more enjoyable, use real mugs and marshmallows for students to enjoy a sweet treat after the activity!
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24. Christmas Counting Cards
Why not inspire your kids to learn with a Christmas tree-themed counting mat over the holidays? Use real mini-trees and Christmas decorations if you want to make it extra special.
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25. Paint It
Get your preschoolers engaged by having them finger-paint the correct number of dots that belong in a basket or the right number of gumballs that belong in a gumball machine.
Learn More: Teaching Mama