Sharing and giving High Fives is something special to do for learning about the number 5. While even very young kids know what a High 5 is and how to do it, they do not understand what is 5. Even knowing how to count to 5, doesn’t mean a child has figured out ‘fiveness’. Understanding numbers, not just saying them or counting them, is called number sense. Kids are not born with it; they have to develop it. Lots of experiences with numbers and counting will help them make the necessary brain connections. Having a basic idea of a few numbers is generally part of kindergarten readiness and number sense is something that continues to grow once at school.
What can you do at home to help your child understand the number 5? A quick look in the junk drawer at home will likely turn up lots of small junk that can be used up in this project. Thanks to Deborah at TeachPreschool for this really fun activity using lots of little objects glued into a box lid. Here’s a picture of kids counting and gluing and a link to her article: http://www.teachpreschool.org/2012/01/making-math-glue-boxes-in-preschool/
If glue is on the “oh-oh” list at your house, try stretching some plasticine or playdough on a paper plate or box lid and letting your child just smoosh 5 things into it. That way it’s easy to take them out and let your child put in 5 different ones for more fun and readiness for kindergarten practice.
Some other things to support learning about 5 could be some actions, have your child jump 5 times, hop 5 times, blow 5 kisses, take 5 baby steps or do 5 jumping jacks. Sneak in a few like pick up 5 things off the floor, put away 5 toys. Does your child have train cars? Put 5 cars behind the engine. Have your child build a block garage for 5 cars. Oh no, 5 stuffies are crying and need to sit and read a story–or 5 stories! Share 5 hugs and kisses with your child. Did you remember some High Fives?