Teaching Numbers to Preschoolers

Questions: What are some things that I can do with my preschooler to help her learn how to read and write her numbers? -- Want to Teach Answer:

Answer: Before you start teaching your daughter to read and write numerals, you should make sure that she has developed the concept of numbers through sorting, ordering and counting activities, then she is ready to start reading numerals first, then writing them.

Mathematicians use the word "numeral" for the written symbol of a number. Children must learn that when they see the symbol "6," they say the word "six" and are talking about a set of six things. The following are some good activities for you and your daughter:

  • -Back Scratchers: Take your finger and trace the outline of a numeral on your child's back. Have your child tell you the number.
  • -Playing Cards: Shuffle the cards and turn them face up one at a time (in the beginning use only the cards up to the number 5). Have your daughter point to the numeral in the corner of the card and say its name, then count the number of hearts, etc., on the card.
  • -Index Cards, a Paper Bag and Glue: Write a numeral on each index card with glue. After the cards dry, you will have a set of raised numerals. Place the cards in the bag, have your daughter reach in and select a card and tell you the numeral without looking.
  • -Sandbox: Ask your child questions like how many feet do you have? Have your child write the numeral in a cake pan with some sand.