Counting is a basic strand across math standards. There’s even research that suggests counting with pre-k children can build math concepts they will use later on in kindergarten and primary grades. To avoid rote counting without meaning, let TOUCH AND COUNT be the mantra you repeat and model over and over. Counting will also have more meaning if you tie it into exercise with one of these ideas.
*Adapt these activities for younger children by just counting from 1-10. Older students can count to 100 and beyond.
Karate Chop Count
Feet out, knees bent, karate chop with your right hand and then your left as you count by ones.
*Do leg curls and chops as you count by 5’s to 100
*Kick front and back as you count by 10’s to 200.
*Wax on, wax off as you count by 100’s to 1000.
*You can also karate chop spelling words and word wall words. Chop with right hand as you say a letter and then chop with the left hand as you say a letter. Hands folded together and bow as you say the word.
Write numerals 1-20 on a cotton shoelace with a fabric marker. Slide a bead on the shoelace and move it up and down as you count.
*What’s one more than___? Two less than___?
Pump Up to 100
Pretend to hold weights as you count.
1-20 - bicep curls (Elbows in, pretend to hold weights in fists with palms up as you bring forearms up and down.)
21-40 - for overhead press (Fists face forwards as you start at your shoulders and push the weights overhead.)
41-60 – side raises (Elbows at 90% angles as you raise them out to the side.)
61-80 – upright rows (Fists together close to the body and raise elbows out and up until fists are at your heart.)
81-100 – frontal raises - (Fists together and arms stiff as you raise them in front of your body to eye level.)
Whew! (Wipe brow!!!)
*Let children get an imaginary jump rope and jump as they count to 100.
Dance and Count
Choose a different dance move for each ten as you count.
1-10 – Disco (Index finger up and down across body.)
11-20 – Hitchhike (Thumb out across body.)
21-30 – Swim (Make swimming motions.)
31-40 – Bollywood (One hand up in circular motion and one down.)
41-50 – Pony (Step from side to side.)
51-60 – Twist (Twist at waist.)
61-70 – Salsa (One arm bent up and other hand on elbow.)
71-80 – Monster (Arms out in front of you.)
81-90 – Bird (Flap your arms like a bird.)
91-100 – Do your own thing!