This weekend the kids and I created a fun, new math game! And all you need to play is popsicle sticks and a jar!
Not only will children gain important skills from game playing: social skills (follow rules and directions, turn-taking, etc.) and early math skills (know number names and count sequence). But the premise is simple enough that even toddlers can play along, too.
To play the game, children have to line up their popsicle sticks in order from 0-9. The first one to get all their numbers (and in order) wins!
Number of Players: 2-3
Materials Needed: Popsicle sticks and a jar! Using colored popsicle sticks, label at least three sets of sticks with numbers from 0-9. We already have a labeled set of sticks from our big numbers activity (read about it here), so we were all ready to play.
How to Play: Put all the numbered sticks into the jar. Each player picks six popsicle sticks from the jar and lays them flat. Players order their sticks from smallest number to largest (toddlers will need help here).
Put any doubles back into the jar. Now the game can begin! Pick who will go first. The first player closes their eyes and picks from the jar. If they already have that number, they put it back in the jar. If they dont have it, they add it to their number lineup.
The next person picks a popsicle stick and play continues until someone has all of their numbers from 0 to 9. When this happens, the player shouts “Numbers!” and the other players check to make sure the winner has all their numbers and in the correct order.
- Label additional popsicle sticks to 20. Take out all the early numbers, and have children start with a number other than one. For instance, children can practice counting starting with 5.
- Label sticks for skip counting by 2’s, 5’s, or 10’s.