Tot School Tuesday: NUMBERS

It's week 4 peeps! That's a whole month down :) I'm pretty proud of myself for sticking with it even with all of our travels and sleepy time battles over the past month.  I have loved the routine of it which has made our crazy afternoons more enjoyable. I hope to keep this up when little one arrives so that Madelynn can expect some fun quality time each day.

Here were our plans for the week:
And here is what we actually did...
Here are the 5 books that we used as our focus each day.  
1, 2, 3 to the Zoo by Eric Carle
Chicka, Chicka 1, 2, 3 by Bill Martin Jr. and Michael Sampson
Teddy Bear Counting Book by Barbara Barbieri McGrath
Ten Apples Up on Top by Dr. Seuss
How Do Dinosaurs Count to Ten by Jane Yolen

This week's theme was perfect time to incorporate a few more hands on counting activities with our stories.

Teddy Bear Counting Book
This book goes along with the little plastic counting bear manipulatives, and lucky for Madelynn I purchases tons of these little counters when my first classroom didn't have them. You can find them at most teaching or learning toy stores and also on Amazon here. We used them to match the colors and count along on each page.

Ten Apples Up On Top 
I already had this felt retelling set created for my classroom, so I had to pull it out for M to play with.  She had fun counting and stacking the apples on top of the persons head while I read the book.

Counting Snowballs:
I created these little counting cards with some snowmen and snowballs. Then I had Madelynn use tongs to place the correct number of snowballs on each card. If you'd like to print a copy for yourself you can find them here: 
 Sort and Count Bottles:
Water bottles are always great for fine motor activities with the small opening at the top.  I made these by wrapping a colored piece of felt around each one and hot gluing them down (so Madelynn wouln'd to to tear them off ). Them I had these large number stickers so I used a little dab of hot glue to make sure those would stay on too.  I had the correct number of each colored pom pom already out for M to put in each bottle since she isn't quite ready to count things independently yet.  As she gets older I will definitely pull these back out and have her try to count the correct number herself from a large bowl of pom poms.
 Pipe Cleaner Bead Count:
We've sorted beads by color on pipe cleaners before, so I thought I would turn it into a simple counting activity.  I took a small label and folded it in half to label each number and then helped M as she put beads on each one.  Of course she didn't want to stop after she got to the number on each one, so we just kept practicing our counting as she added more beads.
  Dot Stamp Numbers:
I printed these dot stamp number pages from Shannon's Tot School. She has a lot of great printables that you can find for free here. After a few times with me modeling how to stamp in each circle, I was surprised at how well Madelynn did at really concentrating on getting a dot in every circle.
 Here is her progress. 0 was before my demonstration, then I used the number 1 to model for her and she did 2 all by herself! Definitely made me proud! I foresee more Dot Stamp activities in our future :)

Number Hopscotch Puzzle:
So I laid all of these pieces to M's floor puzzle out on the floor thinking we would play hopscotch. But she has been obsessed with puzzles lately so of course all she wanted to do was put it back together...
 I managed to get her to walk on the pieces, but that's about it..
 Number Exercise Dice:
I found this exercise clip art from Whimsy Clips and used it to create these dice for Madelynn.
We rolled them and then did the number of each exercise on the dice. I loved watching her try to hop on 1 foot.
 And do push ups, haha! Too funny!
Kick and Count:
Since Madelynn loves to kick balls lately, this one was easy. I just used our sorting bottles and grabbed a ball. I set the ball a few feet away and let M kick it and try to knock them over.  We actually moved this into our carpeted play room after a few tries which helped the ball and bottles not roll like crazy all over the place. After she knocked them down we practiced counting how many fell over and trying to name the numbers on each bottle.

Snacks were easy this week as we did a lot of counting out different things.

 Animal Cracker Count:
We started the week counting out animal crackers on a simple mat I made for 1-6.I had a page fro 7-12, but the crackers were too big to fit more than 6 so we just stopped there.
 Number Crackers:
Remember how much this girl LOVES peanut butter from last week? Well I had the idea to spread it on some crackers and then build numbers with raisins for a more interactive snack. And M actually helped spread the PB without trying to shove it all in her mouth!

 Goldfish Cracker Count:
Just like our animal cracker count, we used these mats to count out the goldfish.  I included clip art goldfish on each one so M could math them up while counting as well. If you'd like to print a copy for yourself you can find them here: 
 Counting Fruit Skewers:
This one was inspired by The Very Hungry Caterpillar, which I never really thought of as a counting book until Madelynn pulled it out for bedtime this week. I added 1,2,3,4, and 5 of each type of fruit (with a few extras on the side) then We counted them as she ate each one!

Number Theme Bin #1:
I tried out lots of different bins with Madelynn this week and she loved scooping and dumping all the different materials.   Included in this bin: cut up plastic straws, foam numbers, and scoops.
Number Theme Bin #:
I was going to have Madelynn match the numbers on the balls to a labeled egg carton, then realized we were out of eggs, haha, so we just played with and named the numbers on each ball.  Included in this bin: beans, ping pong balls labeled with numbers, and scoops.
Number Theme Bin #3:
I hid the numbers under the popcorn kernels, so this one got a little messy until I gave M some bowls to put the numbers in that she scooped out. Included in this bin: unpopped popcorn, plastic magnet numbers, and scoops.
Play Dough Number Mats:
I found these simple play dough mats at Free Homeschool Deals and printed them out for Madelynn to use. She's still working on making "snakes" and "balls." So I had to help her a pit, but she liked trying to fit it in the number and squishing the balls on the ten frame at the bottom. As she gets better with making the little snakes on her own we will definitely use these to trace the number words too.
Salt Tray Numbers:
And of course the week just wouldn't be complete without pulling out our salt tray, so this week we used it to write numbers. Luckily 0 and 1 were nice easy shapes that M could feel independent making, and I had to help her with the rest of the numbers.
And that's it! If you want to catch up on the other tot school posts you can check them out here:

And if you take a look at my year long plans, you'll see I had Xylophone listed for next week (mostly because I wanted to work on the letter X) and we were going to do lots of music activities. But I jut had way too many fun ideas for Valentines day, so we are going to skip ahead and do 2 full weeks of Valentines fun. Get ready for pink, red and heart overload! So here is the revised calendar if you want to see what is coming up in February:


  1. I love the goldfish mats. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Your site is amazing! Thinking of starting a more structured "school" environment for my almost two-year-old in a few months; this was exactly what I was looking for! Do you offer printable versions of the themes?

    1. I am working on putting all of my tot school plans together in downloadable files, they should be organized and ready early this summer. Thanks for checking out our plans!


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