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Count your way to Valentine’s Day with these special cards that are made to share. Your child will learn about basic math concepts such as number recognition, shapes, and patterns—all while designing an imaginative set of counting cards. Use these holiday-inspired cards with your child as a colorful learning tool to reinforce her budding mathematical abilities. The love and heart theme of these cards is fitting for Valentine’s Day, but they can be used (and reused) year-around!
What You Need:
- Card stock or cardboard (in a light color)
- Heart-shaped stamps (or stickers)
- Ink pad
- Tempera paint and paint brush
What You Do:
- Cut the card stock or cardboard into rectangle card shapes. Have your child paint both sides with Valentine’s Day-themed colors such as pink or lilac purple.
- Start with the number one. Invite your child to use a marker to write the number on one side of a card.
- Have her repeat the previous step on each card, up to the number ten. If she is having trouble drawing the numbers, try helping her by writing them out with a light colored pencil. She can then trace over your writing with marker.
- Turn the cards over. Ask your child to add shapes to represent each number. For example, paint or stamp five shapes to represent the number five. She can feel free to draw or paint her own shapes, or use a heart-shaped stamp pressed into an ink pad or paint.
- Encourage your child to count the shapes on the back of each number card to check her work.
- If your child wishes, she can add an extra sparkle to each card using red or pink glitter. She can add a border, or embellish the numbers or shapes with glitter.
If you notice that your child is losing interest in the numbers one through ten, create new cards starting at eleven. Ask her to play with the size of the hearts using different panting techniques. Count away!
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