Friday, July 25, 2008

Recognizing Numbers

Once children can count, a natural step is to learn to recognize numbers. Eventually they will connect that the symbol for the number three means "three things."
Here is how to help them make that connection:

Number recognition:
Point out and name numbers on everyday things, such as signs, receipts, houses, buses and anything else you can find that has numbers on it.

Play plenty of simple board games. Candyland can be played with children as young as three years old, and involves counting colored squares to moove a gamepiece. For variety, the game Trouble can be played by five year olds and involves recognizing the actual number and moving a game piece the number stated.

You can also play card games that require counting and recognizing numbers concurrently, such as Crazy Eights, Go Fish, Dominoes, and Uno.

Reading together can be one of the best ways to reinforce number recognition. Start, when your child is a baby, with simple cardboard counting books, and move on to more challenging books as your child matures. There are many number recognition books available at bookstores and libraries. Have your child casually count with you when you are reading. Say, "Let's count the baby chicks, " and take her little finger and touch it to each object while you are counting.

It is a painless way to teach and learn.

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