archive for the 'Mathematics' category

Christmas Patterning Activity

christmas patterning activity

This Christmas patterning activity is one of many pattern pin sets that we use in our classrooms. Pattern pins are easy to make, inexpensive, hands-on learning tools. Plus, they are super cute, the kids love them, and they work those small hand muscles!


– Paint mixing sticks
– Paint (craft or spray)
– Clothespins
– Jingle bells
– Christmas mini bows
– Hot glue gun

christmas patterning activity

For this set, we painted the mixing sticks brown; we always use a dark color for our bases, so that the patterns really stand out. You can pick up mixing sticks at Home Depot, Lowe’s, or your local paint store. We found jingle bells and mini Christmas bows at Dollar Tree, and hot glued them to the tops of clothespins.

christmas patterning activity

You might first introduce pattern pins and demonstrate the concept of patterning in a large group, and then work with small groups of children, making patterns together.

Students will not only create patterns, but they will also copy and extend patterns that are represented on other sticks (made by you or other students). For this reason, it’s a good idea to have multiple bases on hand. Be sure to encourage your students to identify their patterns and describe what is and what is not a pattern.


Christmas Tree Number Quantity Activity

christmas tree number quantity activity

These free printable Christmas trees provide children with a fun way to match numerals with quantity. Have students identify the number on each tree and “decorate” it with the corresponding number of “ornaments”. Encourage children to count every item once, using one number word.

To extend this activity, ask pre-kers to examine and compare the number sets of trees. Ask, “Which set has more? Which set has less?” when showing 2 sets. Remind children that the world less means not as many.

You can also use this tree game as an opportunity to practice adding and taking away skills.

Use words such as more, plus, all together, total, etc. to help students gain an understating of “adding more”. “There is 1 ornament on this Christmas tree, and 2 ornaments on this tree. How many ornaments are on the trees all together?” Set up trees 1, 2 and 3 in a row to model this addition problem. Do the same with subtraction, using words such as less, take away, and how many are left.

download Download our free numbered Christmas trees. For heavy use, I recommend printing on cardstock and lamination.


Thanksgiving Turkey Craft

thanksgiving turkey craft

This Thanksgiving turkey craft is a cute, fun art project. But it’s also a wonderful lesson in math, as it is completely made up of 2D and 3D shapes! There are so many learning concepts in this little gobbler.

The hat is made up of squares and a rectangle, the eyes are circles, and the beak is a triangle. We used the Fiskars large heart punch to make the wattle, and the tail is a paper plate cut into a semicircle. Square tissues were used as feathers, and everything was attached to a cardboard tube/cylinder.

As children assemble their turkeys, have them analyze, compare, and identify the shapes based on their attributes; facilitate conversation about the similarities and the differences of the objects. When working with older students (pre-kers and kinders) who are developmentally ready, take this opportunity to introduce the vocabulary words 2D and 3D, and talk about how 2D shapes are flat and 3D are not.


– Toilet paper roll
– Construction paper
– Fabric
– Tissue paper
– Googly eyes
– Stiff felt
– Paper plate
Fiskars large heart punch
– Glue
– Scissors


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