Learning Activities

  • Learning through play is always fun! Check out some fun activities to do with your students below. For more fun ideas and activities visit: www.theimaginationtree.com.



    bean counting

    Have fun playing this beans and flower pots counting activity using the simplest of materials! Playful, hands-on maths for preschoolers to school-age children, which can easily be adapted to become more challenging if needed.


    • Set some plain beans into a basket and then write numbers from 1 to 20 on some little planter pots (very cheap from the garden centre), using a Sharpie permanent marker. Set these out for them to play with on a table.
    • Have the kids count out the beans carefully using 1:1 correspondence and checking to make sure they have the right amount for each number/pot.
    • Have them put the pots into the correct order and read the numbers.
    • You could introduce the idea of adding together two pots full of beans to find the total amount, or even move onto subtraction for older children. Working on ordering the number pots is a crucial step too, as is ensuring they are using correct 1:1 correspondence as they count out each bean. We encourage them to move them as they count to make sure they don’t make mistakes as they count.

    What they are learning as they play

    • Recognizing numerals to 5, then to 10, then up to 20
    • Counting using 1:1 correspondence
    • Ordering numbers, counting objects up to 10 and then up to 20
    • Combining small sets of numbers
    • Subtracting small sets of numbers


    counting beads

    Set up a fun playful maths activity using spaghetti stuck into play dough and a box of colourful threading beads! Fantastic for developing fine motor skills, practising counting, recognising numerals and making simple patterns in a hands-on, open-ended way.

    • Set out balls of play dough with dry spaghetti skewers stuck into them.
    • Next to this have a box full of coloured wooden threading beads in a range of sizes and shapes.
    • Create some numeral cards (made very simply by writing onto squares of card.)
    • Have the kids make their own patterns with the beads and count out numbers to match cards.


    What they are learning as they play

    • Fine motor pincer grasp, steady hand control, threading.
    • Counting using 1:1 correspondence.
    • Recognizing numerals up to 20.
    • Counting up to 20 objects reliably.
    • Matching and creating simple repeat patterns.