early learning

Early Learning

Young children learn well when they use hands-on projects.   This is a great activity that promotes early learning, specifically working with numbers, but it is also very easy to make and use. Two simple everyday objects can be combined to make an early learning tool. In this case I took an empty frosting container and some clothes pins and made a number game. The numerals were written around the top of the frosting container. Dots were written on the end of the clothes pin that clips to objects.

Working with Numbers

Children have to clip the clothes pin with the correct number of dots over the right number. Yes, this is a simple activity for working with numbers, but it involves using several early learning skills. Children have to not only have an understanding of how many semi- concrete object or dot are on each clothes pin. They also have to use small motor skills to open the clothes pin and keep it open until the clothes pin is above the right number. If you have a child that needs to see things displayed in a linear fashion, you may want to have them line up the clothes pins in number order before they do the matching activity on the cup. You can make this activity self checking by placing the dots on the inside of the frosting container right behind their numeral. Children can easily peek inside to see if they have the right answer. Oh! You could also add a handful of beans into the frosting can. Some children need to count out numbers using physical objects. The physical act of moving objects helps them build an understanding of numbers. Adding counting beans to this early learning activity would allow it to include ways to see a number in concrete, semi- concrete, and abstract manors. No matter how you decide to use this tool for working with numbers I think you and your child will have fun playing with numbers.
You might be interested in these other kids activities for early learning and working with numbers:

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  1. What a great, simple idea! And I love that you can spend as much or as little time on it as you want, since little ones tend to be pretty fickle with their attention. It’s yet another reason for me to buy clothespins, even though I don’t have a clothesline. I guess they’re like pipe cleaners now. Creative moms have helped them outlive their natural lifespan. Although, I should really get a clothesline.

  2. We did lots of this with our preps and grade ones. Great for learning, it’s hands-on and includes all the great things you mentioned. Thanks for sharing. It’s a great one for parents at home! 😀

  3. This is a great number recognition and matching activity. And a bonus activity for fine motor to pinch the clothespins with small fingers. My preschool students love math as well. They liked counting and placing these sticks in order http://www.brennaphillips.com/preschool-counting-sticks We also had another activity to go with the farm theme: farm animals on a paper circle wheel and corresponding clothespins to match the number on the pin to the number of farm animals on each section of the wheel. Great ideas. Thanks for sharing.