6 counting games and tips to help your child's learning at home

Updated: Jan 6

With so many children and families facing intermittent self-isolating at present, it's a good time to look at playful ways you and your child can cement their learning at school, while they are at home. Earlier this week we shared some wonderful ways to play games and get tips for helping support your child's reading journey. Today we're sharing the same to help learn their numbers and start their counting journey!

1. Counting with Numberblocks

Okay, so reading is supposed to keep your kids away from the TV but... CBeebies Numberblocks really is an ideal way for little ones to discover all about numbers. Each letter is a character with its own fun personality, bound to keep children entertained and interested. Despite scouring the internet, we really couldn’t find a more fun way to learn. You can catch it on TV, but if you want to set this aside as a learning exercise, you could subscribe (free) to the Youtube channel and have your child watch it at a table using the iPad.

2. Counting to 100 the Macarena way

If your aim is to get them counting a bit better than ‘one, two skip a few’, then check out the Macarena count to 100 video on Youtube:

It might drive you crazy but apparently it really works.

3. Traditonal board games and real life tasks

If your aim is to steer clear of screens and take learning back to basics, then there are many fun and creative ways to help your child learn to count. Consider all of the everyday tasks involving counting that you take for granted. You could get your child to help you put the shopping away and while you’re doing it, count all the items together – how many apples will they put in the bowl, can they add the number of old eggs to the new eggs that you’ve just bought? It’s hard in this digital age but don’t forget to think offline. All of those traditional board games that many of us were brought up with - think Snakes and Ladders, Connect Four, Noughts and Crosses (Tic Tac Toe) - involve some form of counting.

4. Playing shop

You could also let your child set up their own shop at home. Let them choose a selection of products, vegetable or tins from the cupboard will do. Then they can price each up and 'serve' you when you come back to purchase your shopping! You can of course buy toy tills and money, but nothing beats the real deal.

5. Maths games online galore

Check out Topmarks for fun counting and junior maths games for kids from aged 3 and upwards.Full of educationally sound online resources. It's a safe environment for children because they only include trustworthy, reliable educational content.

6. Remember remember,

That learning through play at this age is all about having fun and there's nothing less 'fun' than feeling like you're just not getting it. When your child complains, and they will at some stage, that they just can't do it. Remember to add one small word to their sentence...

'you can't do it, yet'. Making mistakes is how we learn, and encouraging children to try, and make mistakes, and keep trying is the biggest lesson you can teach them.

For more ideas about how to help your child do well at school, The Good Play Guide has some great tips and downloable games and resources such as how to play 'What's the time Mister Wolf', to help you to encourage a love of learning.

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