# Kindergarten Readiness – Halloween Math

To understand numbers and develop number sense your child needs lots and lots of experience counting, making groups, and talking about numbers. Kids learn best through play, so here’s some ways to play with numbers and boost kindergarten readiness at the same time. Choose a couple of these ideas that match your child’s level.

1. Use a paper bag or other container. Pretend blocks or lego or even bread tags are Halloween treats. Ask your child to put 3 ‘treats’ in the bag. Dump them out and suggest  maybe 5 treats. Try a few more numbers.

2. You can put some ‘treats’ in, then let your child dump them out and count how many treats there are. Help your child point to each one and only count each ‘treat’ once. This can be quite tricky for kids, especially when items are close together.

3. For kidlets that have the concept that each item only gets counted once and are accurate when counting up to 10, this activity is more challenging. Count 5 ‘treats’. Give 3 to your child and 2 to you. How many treats? 5 treats. Now, give 3 to you and 2 to your child. How many now? Count them again and it’s still 5. Now, give 4 of those treats to your child and 1 to you. Did it change? Are there still only 5 treats? Pretty wild! No matter how many different ways those treats are shared, it always makes 5! This is called conservation of number. Each number is always that many, no matter how it’s lined up, piled up, shared out, spread out, or squished together, it’s just so much.

On second thought, maybe it’s not so good for kids to be able to accurately count out their Halloween treats. How can we sneak out the good ones? (I like the coconut chews. What’s your favorite?)

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