This Sweetie jar counting game teaches your child how to count and how to recognise numbers from 1-12.
It’s a fun and visual way to start counting and to become more familiar with first numbers. It’s also a great learning activity for little ones.
Time: 5 minutes
Age: Little kids
Difficulty: Easy peasy
Step 1: Print out the sweet jars
Download and print out the sweetie jar printables which you can link to here:
If you have a laminator, laminate the sheets so that they can be used again and again.
Your child can then write on them with a wipe-off pen.
If you don’t have a laminator your child could write on the sheets with pencil or you could simply print out more copies when they get worn.
Step 2: Start counting
As a warm up before playing the game take turns to count out loud to 1o with your child.
To make this more fun you can both pretend to be holding in visible tennis rackets and ‘bat’ the number you are saying to your partner.
So you say 1 and bat your hand towards your child. They have to say the next number – 2- and bat it back to you.
Another way to practice numbers up to 10 would be to simply take your buttons or ‘sweeties’ and count them out together into a big pile.
Practice counting up to 10 a few times. You could even try counting backwards from 10 for an extra challenge.
Cut out each sweetie jar and give your child a jar and some buttons or counters.
As counters you could even use Smarties or wrapped sweets if you prefer (although be aware these might get eaten while playing!)
Ask your child to read the number on the jar, say it out loud and then count out the correct number of ‘sweeties’ to put in the jar.
When they are counting out their counters ask your child to say each number every time they put down a counter.
Step 3: Write the numbers on the jars
If your child has started learning phonics, you can practice their writing skills too.
After counting out the correct number of sweeties, ask your child to trace over the dots to write out the words of each number.
Over time they will be beginning to recognise the shapes of the words that go with each number and the letters they are made up from.
After your child has become more familiar with counting out the numbers for each sweet jar, you may want to start doing some small additions.
For example you could say, if you have a sweet jar with 1 sweetie and then get another sweet jar with 2 sweeties, how many sweeties would you have in total?
Feel free to get creative and enjoy playing this sweetie jar counting game again and again.