Thursday, November 21, 2013

Numbers 1-10 Sort and Count

Many of our students are working on solidifying concepts of quantity and corresponding number symbol.  The early Montessori math materials highlighting these concepts include the Spindle Boxes, Cards and Counters, and Memory Game of Numbers.  Recently, I put together a new lesson that combines sorting, counting, number symbol recognition, and odd/even numbers.

Numbers 1-10 Sort and Count
The clear box contains interesting items from nature including acorn caps, small rocks, shells, pinecones, etc.  Each group of items represents one number.  For example, there are two pinecones, three chestnuts, four stones, five pieces of sea glass, etc.  I made the number cards with sticky-backed numbers used for making signs and marking addresses from the hardware store.
I  have chosen to present this lesson after the Cards and Counters and before the Memory Game of Numbers.  To complete the activity, the child should already be able to count out a certain number of objects and be able to lay them out without the use of a control.

After the child sorts the items, he/she retrieves a number card and reads the number.  Next, the child  finds the group of items corresponding to the number symbol on the card.  Then, he/she places the items underneath, similar to the way the counters are placed in the Cards and Counters activity.  Some children may wish to place the numbers in order - the child in this picture chose not to.  One of the first things this student noticed while placing the items was the visual cue of an odd or even number.  While placing the seven small pieces of wood for example, the student said, "This number is odd!"  I appreciate how this concept is reinforced from the previous lesson with Cards and Counters and how the children have made this connection on their own.
The completed lesson.
Just for fun and variety, the back of each card has the same number of circle stickers so the child can check their work - if they have counted correctly, all the circles will be covered.


  1. Sasha, your posts are always so timely! Amelia has been talking about this for the past couple days but hasn't been able to fully describe it. Now we know. She loves having to sort out all the pieces, that they come from nature, and that she can "check" herself by turning the card over. Such a lovely way to connect, learn and explore!

    1. Thanks, Jennifer - and of course, Amelia was one who lined them up in order! ;-)

  2. I just want to say please keep this (teaching & blogging) going. You're inspiring me! Thank you!

  3. Thank you very much for your kind feedback!