Write & Count Fire Trucks

This week is fire prevention week and we’ve been sharing some of our fire truck and firefighter themed crafts on our Pinterest and Facebook now it’s time for something new on the blog. This fire truck math activity is really also a writing one although I only marketed it as a math one for my son. See he isn’t super keen on writing but he loves math. He is a bit of a perfectionist and writing takes practice and it’s hard. So to temper the frustration he feels with writing I added a fun theme and another appealing task , the math. There was still some frustration but there were a lot of smiles too.

  1. Gather your materials. You will need some red paper, a black marker, a pencil, and scissors.
  2. Start by drawing the outline of a fire truck. This does NOT need to be perfect, as you can see mine wasn’t and this took we 3 tries. One tip is to draw on on scrap paper and when it’s just right cut it out and use that as a template. Cut out however many you want.
  3. Add some windows, tires and the most important part the ladder. The rungs on the ladder are what your child will count and then write on the body of the truck.
  4. I cut out 7 but only drew on 5 not knowing if my son would want more than 5 . Good thing I did as you will see.
  5. Count the ladder rungs.math for kids
  6. Write.  After a few he asked if these were all I had. I grabbed the 2 extra and filled them in.
  7. Keep going. Flip over and write on the back if they want more!


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  1. Georgine says

    Is your son in Kindergarten? I ask because my daughter does Montessori in the morning and kindergarten in the afternoon, and I am not sure how much extra “stuff” to do with her. It is a longer day than she was used to last year and I don’t want to exhaust her, however, she too could use some writing practice and well as keeping up on sight words and letter sounds , etc.. So my question is, if your son is in school, how much extra “fun” do you have? Oh and my daughter received the Tag reader as a gift. The body book and solar system were big hits. She got a bunch of books, but I am going to pull out mr. Pencil. Thanks for the recommendation.

    • admin says

      What a great question! Yes he is in full day kindergarten so I have scaled it back considerably. You will see him doing more games probably since he loves those. Kindergarten has very little homework ( and it’s all optional) so we are lucky in that respect I know some Kindergarten teachers are eager to send a lot of work home. I usually do activities like this on the weekend with him or like last week he had 3 half days for conferences and we did one activity every day. Also this took him about 10 minutes total including the few where he was frustrated and we had to have a pep talk about how his writing is exactly how it should be for a 5 year old and that mine is like it should be for a 35 year old.

      Test the waters – do a few simple things and see if it stresses her. If it does hold off!! School transitions are hard and they need time to adjust.

      Does that help?

  2. Georgine says

    Yes, thank you! We are off today, so I want to do something with her. B is overcoming the perfection in writing slowly. It is hard, I stick with encouragement, but I understand frustration over not being perfect. Thankfully, no homework, it is hard enough to fit everything in as it is (little “chores” she has, playing, dinner, soccer or something, bathes and bed on time.). Thanks for your advice!

    • admin says

      Something my son’s kindergarten teacher has shared with us has helped a little ( although i think in the long run it is helping a lot). Is to say that she is writing exactly like a 5 year old should be, that it takes practice and experience to write like mommy or an older sibling or … it’s helped my son who wants to be perfect right away.

  3. Michelle says

    This is a fun idea! Thank you! I would love to see more ideas for writing practice, particularly word and sentence writing. I homeschool and while my son loves math, reading, science, etc., the one thing he absolutely hates is writing. (He’s 6.) It’s a battle of the wills every day despite my efforts to come up with fun, creative, non-stressful ways to work on it. It’s so sad. He has such a creative mind and comes up with the funnest stories or cute things to write, but his hand just never keeps up with his mind and he gets so frustrated. I sometimes let him dictate to me, but I understand that he really needs to work on writing things himself. So anything you come up with, please share! Every little idea helps!

  4. says

    I love the idea of incorporating things that they love in the activity. For my son, it would be animals and my daughter princesses. Maybe counting the jewels on the princess crown or even counting a specific color. Not sure about animals. Maybe food they eat, or cubs, or a dinosaurs teeth. I probably won’t use the fire truck exactly, but thanks for getting my creative juices flowing this afternoon.



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