This math dice game will inspire number sense and help children better understand what adding looks like. This kindergarten adding activity is how I like to introduce combining two sets of numbers to my child. And you’ve heard me before. Learning math needs to be hands-on. Preschoolers and kindergartners need to touch the objects as they count and have an opportunity to take in new information to make it fit with what they have already practiced.
Let’s jump right in with the supply list. If you have children, it is likely you already own this plate. Here at Days with Grey, I like to keep the supply list simple.
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Large Foam Dice
Here is a softer version of the wooden yard dice. Bonus: it comes with a carry bag!
I used pasta in the pictures, but these counting bears are another go-to for this adding activity. (And basically everything we do at Days with Grey.)
My boys are older now, and we STILL use these plates. – A huge win with eating and activities.
How to play
The directions to this simple kindergarten adding activity are fairly simple.
- For our math manipulations, I used pasta noodles. – Rigatoni! This noodle was big enough for his hands to grasp and the perfect size to still count the number of noodles on each side without getting lost in a pile. I also gave him some divided plates to quickly sort the pasta.
- Begin by rolling the dice. Then, place the same amount of pasta as the amount rolled in the first section of your plate. Then, roll the dice again and put the following amount of pasta on the other section of the plate.
- My preschooler rolled the dice on either side and added the correct amount of pasta. Then, he added both sides to the large section of the plate to see how many in all. Keep the pasta in the large section, or take the pasta pieces out individually and count each piece.
Language to use as your child adds
- You rolled a six here. Here are six noodles.
- On this side, you rolled a 4. Let’s count them out. 1,2,3,4.
- Let’s put all the noodles together to see what we have.
- 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10! I see that! A group of 6, plus a group of 4, makes 10 total!
- The fun started when my four-year-old could see the total before his eyes!
Remember, math needs to be hands-on, even as kids grow older. Kids do not need to learn math on a worksheet.
This is an introduction to adding
As my preschooler rolled and added the amount into the plate, I began hearing my him explore addition.
Moooom, what are 3 pluses and 3 pluses?
Oh, you mean what is 3 plus 3?
But I needed to back my preschooler up. I knew he had a solid foundation of what a group of objects looks like, and I also knew he understood quantity.
Now, we needed to see these numbers combine, and this math dice game was the perfect way to help it all come together! Children need to practice touching the dice as they count.
I recently read an article on why it is so important to use your fingers to count.
Learn Math Through Play
Let’s remember that math games need math manipulatives for children to pick up, move around, and touch as they count. Having good math toys at home matters. When will you try this preschool math dice game?
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Need More Math Games?
- Color Sorting Pom Pom Delivery
- Magnetic Measurement Activity
- Sorting by Shapes – Preschool Math Activity
- 50 Math Activities for Preschoolers
You may also adore these kindergarten picture books as we do!
Frequently Asked Questions
Begin teaching math with dice by rolling and chatting about the number of dots. I also like making a DIY board game to help build number sense and recognition.
Dice is a great way to bring more learning into play. Use dice with toddlers and preschoolers to introduce and practice numbers 1-6. Next, add another die to practice adding.
I find the large dice in the dollar store, or you can find these wooden dice in an outdoor game called Yard Dice.