16 Number Tot Trays!

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After a fall season filled with appropriately Autumn-esque activities, we were ready for a traditional theme! Our goal here is very specific too. E is great at counting to 10! But when he gets to 11, he comes back to 6. (We think it’s the similar sounds of 7 and 11). And we tell him all the time, once you get 11 and 12, the numbers make a lot more sense! So our focus for this theme is to help him count to 20 on his own. So here we go with 16 Number Tot Trays and Activities! (Yes, it was originally 14.)

  1. Shut the Box
  2. Number Puzzles
  3. Number Punching
  4. Preschool Graphing
  5. Cheerio Octopus
  6. Number Tracing Worksheets
  7. Number & Color Matching Practice
  8. Salt Tray
  9. Lacing Cards
  10. Number Books
  11. Number Activity Pages
  12. Unifix Math
  13. Number Tracing Book
  14. Big Numbers with Clips
  15. Number Cutting Practice
  16. Grow a Number Line Dough Tray

Shut the Box

  • Thanks for this pin for this preschool-friendly version of this fun game!
  • As she did, I made a simple page in Word with the letters 1-6
  • Gave him a big foam die and helped him roll it and cross out a number.

Number Puzzles

  • I picked four sets of puzzles (3, 5, 8 and 11) from the The Learning Journey Match It! Numbers
  • These are cute 3 piece puzzles with the numeral on the left, that number of items in the middle, and the written word on the right.

Number Punching

  • In Publisher, I made a set of circles slightly larger than 3″ (my big circle punch). In each I put the number word and the corresponding number of dots.
  • I made sure the dots were pretty low on the circle. Punched these out with the big punch
  • Gave this to him with a hole punch to punch the circles.

Preschool Graphing

  • Pinterest has really inspired me to work on graphs with E!
  • We made it easy by starting with the Graphing tray from the Lakeshore Learning Hands-on Math Tray Set
  • I put an uneven amount of dollar store foam cubes in a container, but put one of each color on the bottom row
  • Time to graph (with a little help from Mom or Dad!)

Cheerio Octopus

  • Completely and entirely found this octopus idea from Mamas like Me — so love this one!
  • Unlike her I really can’t draw so I used a coloring book octopus page
  • I printed this on 11×17 cardstock so it was nice and big and roughly trimmed it (mostly so it would fit in a tray)
  • Drawing I can handle: I drew 8 circles on each tentacle to match Cheerios to
  • So love this idea!!

Number Tracing Worksheets

  • Downloaded this awesome tracing worksheet set from Measured Mom — thank you!
  • For something different, I printed these on ivory colored paper
  • Gave to him as is on a tray with colored markers.

Number & Color Matching Practice

  • This idea is based off The Princess and the Tot — thank you!
  • Started with an old set of reinforcement stickers (I was looking for different colors)
  • I cut cardstock squares in lighter shades of each of the reinforcement colors
  • On each I wrote a number from 0 to 9
  • I left off dots for him to match the stickers to, to see if he could do it himself…
  • Match the correct color and number of stickers to the number on each colored card!

Salt Tray

  • Used my trusty Tidy Tray and a mini OXO beaker full of salt
  • Gave him the numbers 1-4 as used from another activity
  • Showed him he could prop the number up in the salt and draw the number with his fingers!

Lacing Cards

  • Downloaded the lovely number lacing cards from Deceptively Educational — thank you!
  • Did as expected – printed them (in color, even!) and used my Crop-A-Dile to punch the holes.
  • Actually gave this to E with pipe cleaners for lacing.

Number Books

Number Activity Pages

  • On his desk, we gave him a few sheets torn out of a book about numbers
  • The activities include matching, counting, and more tracing!

Unifix Math

  • Got this idea from this post — thank you!
  • First in Publisher, I made some simple match problems. I ended up putting them in their own squares for easy cutting, and added a thick line underneath
  • For the four math problems we started with, we gave him the combinations of Unifix Cubes to complete each math problem.

Number Tracing Book

  • I made a very simple tracing book with numbers 0 to 10.
  • For each page I did the number, the word, then 3 or 4 of the number underneath in a tracing font.
  • Stapled this on the side and “bound” with a strip of miniature duct tape
  • Gave him some crayons for tracing. This activity ended up on his desk.

Big Numbers with Clips

  • Copied this idea from And Next Comes L — thanks!
  • On the Silhouette Cameo, I used a basic font to cut the numbers 1-5
  • (You only see 1-3 here because 4 was giving me fits. This was really thick cardstock!)
  • So I gave him just the numbers 1-3 with my favorite clothespins to match the correct number of clips to each cardstock number.

Number Cutting Practice

  • This is simply an extra sheet from the Shut the Box game for him to use to practice cutting.

Grow a Number Line Dough Tray

  • Here, a few ideas come together in a single theme! Thanks to Tot School for inspiration!
  • Started with some white play dough
  • Made little sticks for each of the numbers, 1-10.
  • First I drew each number on a color coding sticker. I stuck this to one side of a chipboard flower (I got these chipboard pieces in the Michaels clearance aisle!
  • On the backside, I put a small glue dot, a toothpick, then another color coding sticker
  • Along with the dough and sticks I gave him some peas (seeds), a small roller, and a Chubbies vehicle used in past play dough activities!

We very much planned to do a sensory bin, too. But wouldn’t you know, we don’t have number magnets at our house and I couldn’t find them anywhere! All I really wanted was the simple dollar store magnets and they weren’t there either.

Sensory wise though the salt tray was great, it had been a while since we did it. And actually, D told me that after just a few minutes E said it was too easy and he retrieved other things to draw in the salt.

So can E count to 20 now? I think he’s closer than he was before 🙂 He did show he knows most of the lowercase letters though – that was cool!

Cool Books for Number Tot Trays

This set of number tot trays has been shared with 1+1+1=1’s Tot School Gathering Place!

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