Here’s a Halloween math idea for October. This Spider Ring Counting Game is an activity we did recently in my classroom during small group, and the kids loved it. Even the children who usually don’t want to sit down and practice counting… loved it. I first want to say that I do not like worksheets in Pre-K, and while this may look a little worksheet-like, this is what I call a “hands-on game with a recording sheet”. The game is fun and hands-on, but without a recording sheet it won’t really work. (I don’t do lots of recording sheets in my class. Only a few here and there.)
To set it up, I put two plastic spider rings in an empty tissue box for each child in the group. I had one black spider ring and one orange one in each box, and I put some orange and black crayons on the table. (You could also use bingo markers, but I didn’t have a black one.)
To play, children reached in the box without looking and pulled out a spider ring. They marked a spider on their recording sheet with the same color crayon. Then, they dropped the spider ring back in, and tried again. They continued pulling spiders out and marking them until every one on the page was marked. I used the term “mark” the spider because it really didn’t matter how they marked it; it doesn’t have to be completely colored inside the lines. They can scribble on the it, or draw an X on it, or circle it, or whatever suits them.
When all of the spiders were marked, I had them count how many black ones they had and how many orange. For Pre-K, the top part of the recording sheet was for the children to do, and the bottom part was for the teacher to do. I wrote the number they counted in the space. I did have a few children who were able to write the numbers themselves and wanted to do it, so I let them.
So if recording sheets don’t scare you away, this is an expensive activity, with recycled materials, and the kids will love it! To download the recording sheet, click the green button below.