Teaching pre-k math skills is not about following a script or printing a bunch of worksheets. To effectively teach early math skills to your preschool or pre-k students, you need to know the why behind the what. Effective early childhood teachers know exactly why each math skill is important, and they also know how to teach the skill in a developmentally appropriate way.
Pre-K Math Curriculum
A high-quality pre-k math curriculum includes the following elements:
- Incorporates the use of manipulatives in lessons and activities (hands-on learning)
- Places an emphasis on developing number sense skills
- Multiple opportunities for students to practice skills over time
- Time for hands-on exploration of manipulatives daily (independent practice)
It’s not enough to just have the elements above included in your curriculum. For a math curricula to truly be effective, it must allow for easy differentiation and demonstrate a deep understanding of how young children learn.
Here are some elements of an ineffective math curricula:
- Introduces one number or shape at a time (demonstrates lack of understanding of how young children learn)
- Uses worksheets for independent practice (demonstrates lack of understanding of early childhood best practices)
- Uses product based crafts as an element of early math instruction (demonstrates lack of understanding about age-appropriate math best practices)
Pre-K Math Lesson Plans
Because each class is different, an effective pre-k math curriculum offers many choices. Effective teachers are given the freedom to use their assessment data to determine which activities or lessons offered will best meet the needs of students in their own individual classrooms.
Math Activity Examples
More Math Activities
You can find many different age-appropriate math activities for your preschool or pre-k classroom here.