Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers

This post is sponsored by Timberdoodle. All opinions are my own! 

Is your preschooler struggling to remember their numbers? Or maybe you want to get ahead of the game and work with your toddler. Either way, this Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles activity by Timberdoodle is the perfect hands-on way to introduce early math skills!

My daughter is turning 5 (tomorrow!) and we’ve been at this homeschooling gig full-time for about 4.5 months now. It’s been way better than I honestly expected, and we’ve both enjoyed the time together, even with some inital bumps along the way. One of those bumps for Lu has been learning how to count.

Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com

Working Past Preschool Math Struggles

Half of learning to homeschool your kids is finding the best way to get through to them, right? Well, when it came to numbers, I was surprised to find what a struggle it was. For some reason, she decided that there was absolutely no way she would cooperate for counting.

I have no clue what started this resistance to numbers, and I have to admit I let it frustrate me at first. But the beauty of homeschooling is that you can change it up in whatever way is best for your child! One thing I figured out quickly for Lu is that she learns best when it’s a hands-on activity that she is genuinely enjoying so much that learning feels secondary.

With that in mind, I was very excited to see if the Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles counting mats would help! Thanks to this beautifully made counting set, we’ve made major improvements in math! She absolutely loves the pictures on the mats and using pebbles to count with. 

Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com

Lu gets really zoned in on whatever task she’s working on, whether it be matching the pebbles to the mat or trying to build with them. It’s been amazing how much easier it’s been for her to count correctly when counting isn’t the main focus! She gets so excited to show me a completed mat that she will readily count the number of pebbles used without even thinking twice about it. Might seem like a small thing, but for those who share in math struggles- you’ll know how huge it is!

Introduce Math Early to Toddlers 

Another useful way to add this activity into the day is by working with your toddler. Without putting too much pressure on them, this is a great way to get them familiar with counting. Sensory activities are the best way for young kiddos to learn!

Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com

My son is 2.5 and he has really enjoyed playing with these activity mats. He works so hard to find the right size pebble and place it on the mat the correct way. Then when he finishes a picture, we count together to see how many pebbles he used! 

I love the simple yet versatile appeal this activity has to kids. Both my 5-year-old and 2.5-year-old will happily play with their Junior Rainbow Pebbles for quite a while! Learning or not- that’s always a win. Let’s call it a double-win since they ARE learning at the same time. 🙂

Here are a few ways to use your Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles:

Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com
  • Shape and size recognition; putting the pebbles on the correct spot
  • Counting; see how many pebbles were used on the picture
  • Grouping; instruct your kiddo to only put on pebbles of a certain shape or color
  • Order; they can place the pebbles in order or smallest/shortest to largest/tallest
  • Building; test out building skills by seeing how high these smooth pebbles can be stacked up before falling over!
  • Sensory Play: these smooth pebbles are wonderful manipulatives to work with and their sized perfectly for little hands
Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com

Overall, I highly recommend trying out this activity for early or struggling math learners. They are meant for kiddos as young as 18 months old, so pretty soon my youngest will be joining in on the fun! Finding an activity that a variety of ages can enjoy and learn together can be challenging, but these Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles do just that. 

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Hands-On Math Activity for Preschoolers or Toddlers: Earth Tones Junior Rainbow Pebbles | thegrowingcreatives.com
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