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Counting Activities: Counting On and Counting Back

In this activity you will help and encourage your child to count a predetermined number of items and then continuing to count from that point. You can create a second activity by following similar steps in reverse and subtracting from a set number of items.

Follow these steps and be sure to encourage your child with as much positive feedback as possible.

Counting On Activity

StepYour ChildYou
Place two items in your hand. Ask your child to tell you how many are in our hand.“Two”“You got it right.”
Place two more items in your other hand and ask your child how many are there altogether.“Four”Your child may start to count the first hand over again and then add on from the second hand. Allow them to do this, but then teach them how to add on – a very valuable skill.
Close your first hand so that you can not see the items and ask how many are in there.“Two”“You did it!”
Now we start with two and add on the other hand; two, three four.   
You may want to even move your hand and role model yourself.“Two, three, four.”“Bravo!”
Do this procedure many times over with different amounts of items.  
Have your child test you…have your child be the teacher….have fun.“I’m having fun.”“Me too!”

Counting Back Activity

Start with a predetermined number of items and subtract from that amount. Follow similar steps to those above for the Counting On activity except do them in reverse.

The above counting activity was created by Diane Massie, a HelpingWithMath.com contributor, and it is part of her Handling Mathprogram.

First hand experiences brings mastery of a skill and concept.