Tips for teaching kids to count
Start with small numbers: Begin by teaching your child to count from 1 to 10. Once they have mastered this, gradually increase the numbers to 20, 30, and so on.
Use visual aids: Use objects such as counting bears or blocks to help your child visualise the numbers they are learning. It’s easier if everything in the group is the same, such as beans, spoons, counters.
Practice counting aloud: Encourage your child to say the numbers out loud as they count, this will help them to learn the correct pronunciation and how numbers sound.
Start by counting things in a line – this makes it easier to keep track of what has already been counted. Once confident, arrange the objects in a square or zig-zag. And finally, scatter them. Encourage them to keep track of what has been counted by placing them to one side, or marking on paper.
Repeat and review: Repetition is key when learning to count. Review numbers frequently to ensure that your child is retaining the information.
Model the correct order of counting words: “One, two, three. There are 3 in all.”
After counting, reinforce the total number of objects. “How many are there?”
Make it fun: Incorporate counting into daily activities, such as counting steps while walking or counting items while grocery shopping.
Positive reinforcement: Use positive reinforcement, such as praise or rewards, when your child correctly counts a series of numbers. This will encourage them to continue learning and build their confidence.
Practice number recognition: Along with counting, teach your child to recognise numbers and their corresponding symbols (1, 2, 3, etc.). This will make it easier for them to count and understand numbers when they encounter them in other contexts.