Turn snack time into math time with a few simple tricks and activities to make math fun and delicious!
Play “Roll for a Snack.” Use a small snack cup or plate. Take one die, from a pair of dice, and have your child roll it. Count out a raisin, goldfish cracker, small pretzel, or favorite small snack for each dot on the die. Keep rolling and counting until the small cup or plate is full.
Use small pretzel or carrot sticks to form the numbers 1 to 10. When the set is complete say a number (“8,” for example.) If she can point to it, she can eat it! Continue randomly saying the remaining numbers until they are all gone.
Use carrot sticks, pretzel sticks, or Cheerios to measure a clean, flat object. (Around the edge of a plate, the long side of a cereal box, the short edge of the table, etc.) Count, than eat the measuring tools.
Take a deck of playing cards, with all face cards removed. Have your child turn over two cards. Add the numbers, by counting the hearts, clubs, spades, or diamonds, and count out that many Cheerios, raisins, grapes, etc.
Make patterns on a small plate. For example, put a strawberry, grape, banana slice, and blueberry, than repeat the sequence until the small plate is full and ready to eat.
These fun activities will help your child with number sense, adding and subtracting, more than-less than, and measuring skills in an interactive and meaningful way.
Connie McCarthy is passionate about her work as a teacher of young children. She has devoted her entire career to making sure that her students do well at school, right from the start. Connie has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education, and a Master’s Degree in Special Education. She has been teaching first grade in East Providence, R.I. for 23 years, where she received the distinction of “Highly Qualified Teacher” by the Rhode Island State Board of Regents. Connie also taught nursery school for four years, and published numerous articles on early education in East Bay Newspapers in Bristol, R.I. She’s also been published in PTO Today Magazine. She lives with her husband, Brian, and has a daughter and a son, both young adults. Connie enjoys reading, writing about elementary education, and taking long walks with friends. During summer vacations, she likes to travel with her husband. She also loves reading readers’ comments on her weekly blog posts.