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Preschool Math Game – Simple Montessori Christmas Counting


Three years ago , I “discovered” the Montessori method, while searching for fun but educational activities for my preschooler.  This simple counting activity was one of our first activities, and a favorite with my son long after Christmas.

I loved that it cost only $2 and took only a few minutes to create, yet my son was drawn to its simplicity of counting from one to ten.

christmas counting carrotsareorange large

Montessori Christmas Counting

Materials needed:

  • 1 pack of bead garland, cut into sections ranging from 1 to 10
  • seasonal container

Christmas counting2 carrotsareorange

Prep and set-up:

  • Cut the garland in increments from 1 to 10.
  • Place the beads in a decorative container.

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The child pulls out a strand and counts the number of beads on that strand.  Then the child matches the number of beads on the strand with the corresponding numeral or from least to greates (as seen in the top image).

Christmas counting3 carrotsareorangeExtensions:

A favorite extension that my son loved with these bead strands was to match two sets together – preferably with 2 different colored strands.  He would count the beads on each strand and then match strands with the same length.

To practice the teen numbers, I created a similar exercise, but used strands of beads from 11 to 20 instead.

What other simple activities have you found that emphasize math with ordinary items?

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