Activity for ages 3 to 5.
These free apple tree counting mats are perfect for fall! Just grab some pom poms and you’re ready for some fun, hands-on practice with counting, number recognition, vocabulary building and fine motor skills.
I’m absolutely in love with the fall season. It really is my favorite time of year. I love all of the colors and every year we make a trip to an apple orchard to pick apples. It’s my favorite field trip so I like to incorporate apples into a lot of our learning activities.
My 4-year-old is starting to show signs of wanting to count. She doesn’t understand what it is, but at least she is finally wanting to say the words. These apple tree counting mats were a great way to help her start matching the words that she hears with objects she can touch.
To prepare the activity, I printed the apple tree counting mats, laminated and cut them out. Then, I gathered up some red pom poms to use as apples and was ready to go!
When children are first starting to learn numbers, they do not understand the significance of a written numeral or really even the word. Giving them something to touch and compare really helps to solidify their understanding of numbers.
With my daughter, I said the number that was shown on the mat and then counted with/for her to reach that number as she placed each pom pom on the mat.
I finished each mat by saying, “This is three apples” or “There are 4 apples on the tree.” We repeated it over and over again.
I really enjoyed doing this with her because she has recently learned the word “apple” and it’s very exciting to listen to her ‘talking’ after waiting for so long.
When you’re using the mats with your own kids, you can point to the numeral as you talk to show them that it is the symbol for the word you are saying.
We also used the mats to build language skills. I told her, “The tree is green” or “The basket is under the tree” or “The apples are on the tree.” It was a great way to work on multiple skills at once.