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This post has been co-written with Ben Wolfson, a full-time educator and assistant principal in the USA.
Looking for math tray activities for preschoolers? These Asteroid Preschool Number Mats will help your students work on number recognition 1-10!
Your students will love being immersed in all things space, and you can use the theme to hook them into your academic centers. These Asteroid Preschool Number Mats are a great example!
There’s something fascinating about space for preschoolers, from talking about what they can see in the night sky to thinking about what aliens would think about Earth if they came to visit. Space makes for a great theme for your preschool classroom as it doesn’t tie into any particular time of year, so you can use it when you’ve got a few weeks in between holidays.
Teaching Number Recognition 1 – 10
The preschool classroom is sometimes overlooked as a nice bonus for some students to access, but done correctly it can be the foundation on which the entirety of a student’s learning career rests upon. This includes foundational skills like number recognition 1 – 10 which will kickstart your students’ math journey as well as help them master the link between sounds that they make and marks on paper. These asteroid themed preschool number mats provide many opportunities for students to practice learning their numbers, as well as helping you develop some fine motor math activities along the way.
Preparing Asteroid Find The Number 1-10
For this activity you will need:
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These space themed preschool number mats can be prepared instantly – just download and print in color or black and white. If you’re planning on using them as fine motor math activities you should keep them as full page worksheets so that the numbers stay big and the circles are large enough for developing fingers to manipulate.
Teaching With Preschool Number Mats
These space themed math tray activities for preschoolers are ready to use straight off the printer. Your students simply need to study the chosen number on the inside of the asteroid, and then find the number in the surrounding circles. To vary this task, try some of these activities:
Get hands on – to turn these sheets into fine motor math activities, give your students a variety of small objects to cover up the matching numbers. These could be beads, counters or even a block of playdough that they have to break up into small chunks. Anything that forces students to practice their pincer grip and develop their hand and finger muscles will be beneficial in the long run.
Find a certain amount – instead of having students cover up or mark all instances of the chosen number, you can challenge them to find the number a set number of times (e.g. “find 4 circles that have the number in them”). This encourages students to keep count and also keeps the task shorter for students with short attention spans.
Get writing – part of number recognition 1 – 10 is being able to read and recognize the numbers on the page, but your students will want to progress to writing the numbers themselves. After they have played find the number, you can tap into one of any math tray activities for preschoolers that have them practice writing the numbers, from tracing with shaving cream to creating the number from playdough.
More Space Themed Math Centers
This pack of no-prep preschool math mats are designed to be just that – no prep! Simply print the page, setup the other tools you need (pompoms, playdough, etc) and your math center is ready!
There are 10 different games inside that work on a variety of early math skills including counting, one to one correspondence, ten frames, number recognition, number words, graphing, colors, shapes and more! The mats can be used to combine some fine motor development as well and they’re perfect for preschool up to kindergarten!
1.Ten frame mats – use with any counting token to practice one to one correspondence and number sense.
2.Playdough number words – build the word with playdough, then practice tracing it and writing it.
3.Shape mats – form the 10 different shapes with playdough and then practice writing the name of the shape.
4.Spin and graph – graphing of 4 choices from 1-5. 2 different styles of mat included.
5.Counting towers – make a stack of lego blocks, unifix cubes etc according to the number shown. Mats for 1-10 and 11-20 included.
6.Follow the line – trace the lines with small beads, stickers, buttons etc.
7.Roll and count – roll the dice and add that many to the mat.
8.Color sorting – place matching colored pom poms, buttons or beads into each circle.
9.Spin and rainbow write – spin for a number from 1-10 then write out the number. If you land on the same number again, use a different colored marker to end up with rainbow numbers.
10.Find and cover the number – place a pompom over all the matching numbers to work on number recognition skill from 1-10.
Books About Space That We Love:
Other Free Space theme Printables:
1) Space Theme Letter Mazes – A space theme always goes down well with kindergarteners. It’s even better when you can tie in literacy centers to your theme, and this alphabet maze pack is a great way of helping students master their lowercase and uppercase letter recognition skills while experiencing the thrills of outer space.
2) Space Subtraction Clip Cards– If you’re looking for a kindergarten space theme activity that combines subtraction with fine motor skills, then you’ll love this free printable! With the recent spaceship launch to the International Space Station, the alignment of the planets to form the ‘Christmas star’ and all the space themed Lego sets my son received for his birthday, this space subtraction math center is an obvious favorite.
3) Space Vowel Sorting – Kids will love this simple space-themed vowel sorting activity. Which planet does the object belong on? Sound it out loud for some out of this world fun!
Educational Tools For Your Classroom:
Browse My Most Popular Math Printables:
1) Parking Cars Tracing Lines – More than 10 different tracing line patterns to choose from, all of which help with pencil control.
2) Scarecrow Arrange By Size – 3 different scarecrow-themed image sets that they will arrange from smallest to biggest.
3) Bumblebee Addition Game – Solve the sum and help the bee land on the correct flower!
4) Farm Shapes Mats – Use playdough, pompoms, stickers etc to learn 2D shapes.
5) Popsicle Stick Number Formation – Kids will love forming the numbers 1 to 10 when ice cream and popsicles are involved!
8) Counting Colorful Bugs – This printable book will help kids count to 10 while also learning about color words.
9) Humpty Dumpty Numbers – In this printable game, your students will practice number recognition using 1 dice or simple addition when using 2 dice.
10) Build A Number Santa – Match the number to the correct number word, tally mark and domino to form a Santa Claus
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