How to help Preschool Children Develop Counting Skills

Is your child a preschooler and you are wondering how to teach your child to count? If the answer is “yes” then read on to find out how you can teach your child how to count. There are several ways in which you can teach your child how to count by making it part of your child’s life.

You can do this effortlessly by starting with the simple things such as counting oranges, or bananas after your grocery shopping. The following tips will help you to help your preschooler develop counting skills.

What milestones has your child reached in development?

It is advisable for you to list the milestones which your child has achieved in development before you can come up with ways of teaching your child counting skills.

How curious is your child about counting numbers and how is the child relating it to the world around them? One of the easiest ways to teach a child how to count is by using numbers to relate to the world around him or her.

Is your child able to count correctly from 1-5? If the answer is “yes” then this is a good start for you as a parent.  A preschooler should at least be able to count correctly from 1-10. If your child is lagging behind in this area then you should start off by teaching the child how to count objects from 1-5 and proceed on to counting from 1-10.

Can your child identify a written numeral? Can the child understand that the number 2 means two objects etc?

Is your child able to differentiate between “big” and “small”? And use these terms correctly in relation to numerals?

Involve your child in activities which encourage numbers and counting skills

You should teach your child how to apply counting skills to his or her everyday life. This is a good way of reinforcing and building these skills in your child.

You can ask your child to help you to measure baking ingredients when you are baking a cake at home. The child can count the number of spoonfuls or cups of flour needed to make the cake. You can also ask your child to measure the water or milk needed in a recipe when you are preparing a meal etc.

Praise your child

Praising your child after he or she has successfully counted objects praise the child for his or her efforts and encourage them to even look forward to counting much bigger objects. This is a good way of propelling the child to be enthusiastic about counting.

Engage in practical counting activities

Encourage your child how to count, by collecting a variety of items which your child can use for practical (hands on) counting. You can use plastic bottle caps, buttons, pens etc. Stash these items in a bag or box and ask your child to pick one by one as they count them and see how far your child can go with counting items.

When driving with your child ask him or her to count the number of buildings or cars which you drive by and make it a fun game. This is an interesting way of teaching a preschooler how to develop counting skills and will make it easier for such a child to pick interest in learning mathematics when they start school.

Teach your child about addition and subtraction

You can use items around the house to teach the child how to add items and how to subtract items. For example, you can pile 5 plates together and use them to teach the child how to add and subtract by removing and adding the plates during this exercise.

Children relate better to what is within their environment and are able to learn much faster than when they are just reading or being taught from a text book.

Play counting games with your child

One of the ways to teach your child how to count is by playing simple board games which require players to count spaces on the board. This will help your child to recognize printed numerals and how to count spaces. Playing with your child such games will challenge your child to improve on their counting skills.

In conclusion, as a parent, you should first of all identify how much your child knows about counting skills and then take it on from there. You should make it an exciting experience for your child by helping the child to relate to their surroundings through counting.