Pre-school math games and activities to engage young students

Pre-schoolers have to learn many important math skills before starting kindergarten. Calculations, number sense, sorting, patterns, size comparisons, and much more – these are all concepts kids need so they can move on to more advanced math concepts. These preschool math games and activities help kids master those skills in a way that is as fun as playing time!

1. String beads on pipe cleaner

Pre-school math student is stringing beads in a pipe cleaner

It is one of those classic preschool math games that has many benefits for young students. As they learn to count, they learn fine motor control, recognize numbers, and keep numbers in order. All you need is a pipe cleaner and beads.

Learn more: Learn Laughing Kids

2. Monster Dice Match

Printable monster dice game for preschool math students

Rolling dice give kids the opportunity to practice counting and subtizing. Get printable for this free matching game at the link.

Learn more: Measured Mother — Monster Dice

3. Create and calculate

Pre-schoolers using dice and blocks to practice counting

You’ll find lots of dice-related preschool math games out there. In this one, the kids roll the dice and then assemble the blocks. They end up counting blocks together, a preliminary role to add.

Learn more: We raise our hands as we get older

4. Invert the Uno card to make a match

Uno cards put out face down.  Flips a few to show their numbers

Get some memory practice while you learn numbers. Uno cards, with their bright and pleasing colors and large numbers, are suitable for this, but regular playing cards also work.

Learn more: Early playground

5. Tag the number

Toddler is tapping the number six taped to the wall as part of a row number (Preschool Math Games)

We love that this game gives kids a chance to move! Tap the number on the wall (or write on a whiteboard). Then roll the kids a dye and run to tag the number that comes up. You can also play this game in other ways, such as calling numbers randomly or tapping numbers in different places around the house.

Learn more: Read this Mama

6. Build a city

Students are building block towers to match the number of beads;  Read the text "Build a city" (Preschool Math Games)

Stack building blocks and create a city skyline. Each time you get a different result, it’s one of those preschool math games that kids can play over and over again.

Learn more: Cinta + Co.

7. The race to fill the cup

Two blue plastic cups with block and polyhedral dye (preschool math games)

So easy and so much fun! Take a math cube or small toy and a bin with some plastic cups. Kids roll the polyhedral die (you can try flipping cards or uno cards) and put lots of items in their cups. Be the first to win their cup completely!

Learn more: Fill 6 cups of frugal fun for boys and girls

8. Find the numbers

Pre-schooler digs into sandbox and looks for numbers to play cards with (preschool math games)

Combine a sensitive experience with some number practice. Fill a bin with sand, then bury the cards to find the kids and match the cards.

Learn more: Busy Kids / Number Hunt

9. Bounce a balloon

The baby is throwing a pink balloon into the air

Everyone loves to play with balloons! Roll a die, then see if you can bounce a balloon into the air multiple times without hitting the ground.

Learn more: Confidence Meets Parenting

10. Create a Beetle

Colorful beetles made from construction paper

It’s just like the real cottage game, but no need to buy anything! Just cut the beetle piece from the construction paper, then roll a die and see if you can be the first to assemble your bug!

Learn more: Teach Beside Me

11. Draw shapes with sticks

Colorful woodwork used to make triangles, squares and many more shapes (preschool math games)

Kids need to master their size and this is a clever way to do it. Put together a set of wooden craft sticks (use the same color for each shape) and let the little fingers turn into triangles, squares and other shapes.

Learn more: Tim Cartwright

12. Send the bear into the hibernation cave

Number labels made from plastic bowls of small toy bears trapped in caves (preschool math games)

Make a “cave” out of a plastic bowl, then send the little toy bear “sleepless” into each one! Learn how the game works at the link.

Learn more: Pre-school pockets

13. Park the numbered car

Toy cars with children's parking numbers in the combined parking lot slot

Illusions! Enter the number of your toy car to match the slots in a cardboard parking lot. Kids will have fun zooming in on the right place.

Learn more: B-inspired Mama

14. Domino line up

Sorting Domino by Number of Kids (Preschool Math Games)

Dominoes is an excellent math learning tool. This game is a secret role of addition, because the kids count the total number of points in each domino and put them in the right place.

Learn more: Busy Kids-Domino Line-up

15. Copy ice tray patterns

Using a tweezers to place a pom pom on an ice tray to match a pattern card

Patterns are a key skill for preschoolers. Placing pom-poms on ice cube trays with plastic tweezers also helps them work on their fine motor skills.

Learn more: Play time planning

16. Rubber Duck Math Race

Kindergarten math student carrying a rubber duck along a line of plastic tiles

In this game, kids run to see who could be the first to get 10 (or any number of your choice) of their rubber ducks. They roll a dye and spread the tiles to move their ducks. Twist? To reach the end of 10, they need to roll the right number — no more! These types of pre-school math games help kids count and count up to 10.

Learn more: Happy Toddler Playtime — Rubber Duck Race

17. Feed the LEGO monster

Lego picks baby in paper bags arranged like monsters

Arrange Lego bricks according to color, shape or number of dots. Then compare the numbers in each bag to learn the “less or less” concept.

Learn more: Baby approved

18. Block drop in tube

Plastic caps lined up next to cardboard tubes (Preschool Math Games)

Label some empty cardboard tubes with numbers and upcycle. Then drop small items like blocks or caps into the tubes to match the numbers.

Learn more: Happy Toddler Playtime 6 Tube Counting

19. Compare numbers with music

Two students holding paper plates with different numbers of colored dots

Prepare for this game using dot markers on a paper plate as shown (go to the link below for more examples). Each child picks up a plate and uses it to “drive” around the house as you play. When the music stops, they find a partner nearby and compare what they see on each other’s plates (e.g., “8 dots is more than 4 dots. 1 green dot is less than 4 green dots.”). Then start the music and repeat!

20. Hold a shaped scavenger hunt

Paper labeled rectangles, circles and triangles each with different objects matching the shape

Preschool math students are learning to recognize shapes in their environment and to classify and sort. This scavenger hunt does it all! Send them to find objects that match the shape of the room. Then count and compare to see how many you have in each category.

Learn more: Thrifty Fun Shape Scavenger Hunt for Boys and Girls

If you like these preschool math games, be sure to check out these 20 simple and fun preschool science experiments and activities.

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