Lego Math Game For Preschool

lego math roll and build gameDo you know what subitizing is? A lot of people do not and even though we all do it.  When I was studying how to elementary teach math I never learned this it wasn’t something that was focused on but it is now. The easiest way to describe what subitizing is , is to think of it as the numerical equivalent to sight words. It is the ability to recognize total amounts without counting. Tally marks, dice, even fingers are great ways to practice the skill. This Lego math game is great for beginners because it only works subitizing numbers from 1-6. My daughter is our littlest math whiz and loves all things numbers so she was game and dove right in. We played a bunch of times since the game itself can go pretty quickly!  Check out the tutorial below for ways to adapt this game for older children as well.

Gather your materials. You will need a regular die, 12 DUPLO or LEGO bricks, a sharpie, and a tray or wide box to keep the die contained.lego subitizing game

Number your bricks 1-6 with the sharpie. Don’t worry it will come off with a dry erase marker later.lego math for preschool math

Invite your game player and explain the rules – roll an amount , subitize, and find the matching number.

All the bricks are in a loose pile.leho math game for preschool and kindergarten

Roll the die and recognize the amount – say it out loud.Find the brick with that number on it.lego math dice game

Let the other player roll and repeat the steps.lego subitizing lesson

Keep rolling until one person has built their stack and placed it in order.lego brick math game

If you roll an amount you already have skip you don’t grab a brick.

The player who has built their stack first wins.Lego subitizing game for prek

I won the first game and she was not happy. When my kids get upset about me beating them I calmly tell them they can have another chance at beating me if they want to play again. It doesn’t always work but it works more than it doesn’t. Children get excited and losing is disappointing just getting mad at them for being disappointed won’t help. Acknowledge the disappointment and offer some help or ask them how they can get the result they want… practice, play again, take a breather and come back and try again.

 

 

LEGO Challenge for Beginners -Fine Motor Skill Development

preschool lego challenge

My 4 year old has just started playing with LEGO. As much as I loathe the whole pink LEGO and pink everything that is marketed to girls when she asked for this set there was no way I was saying no. I love LEGO  and all the learning opportunities inside each box, especially the fine motor skill development which is a building block for writing. I was telling my 7 year old about doing some LEGO challenges when my daughter asked if she could do some. Of course! That said she hasn’t had much practice with the little blocks yet so I set this easy LEGO challenge up for her and she breezed through it… at her urging I made it harder and we did a totally of 3 trays full of mini challenges. The next day she asked for even harder ones. That’s my girl!

 

Gather your materials. I am using plain old LEGO blocks and an ice tray. This lets me keep the individual challenges organized without too much prep. There are some seriously cool Lego challenge tutorials out there… this one isn’t as polished but as long as you have Lego block you can do it NOW. lego see and build for preschool

Start by creating simple structures. I grab the pieces I need first in duplicate and then create the structures popping the duplicate bricks into one section of the ice tray and the completed structure in the other. lego challenge for beginners preschoolThe first challenge was simple and she breezed through all four quickly. lego challenge for preschool

So we made more… lego challenge for preschool see and build

 

and more… Lego challenge fine motor skillsThese were our most complicated ones and as you can see she had to concentrate. concentration lego puzzles for kidsIf your child is breezing through all of these don’t give them the duplicate pieces separated out. Put all of them in a small bowl or container. I wouldn’t expect my child to dig through thousands of Legos without getting frustrated but it’s a logical next step for this activity to combine the loose pieces and add in a new step. lego puzzels for preschool

What I like about these little challenges  is that she is still just starting out with Lego and this is giving her bite sized models to recreate while she works on some seriously rad fine motor skills. Being able to manipulate the models in her hands make all the difference.

 

{Travel Solutions}Lego Crazy Action Contraptions

We live a few hours and a sometimes long border wait away from my parents and while they have picked up a toy here and there they don’t have a lot for my kids to do other than TV. My kids always want to pack a million of their toys and I end up saying no to nearly every request ( there is only so much room for toys) and not packing enough. Most of the day it’s OK , we bake cookies with my mom, garden and then the ” I’m bored , can I play on your phone?” starts. This time though I was smarter.

As a member of Klutz Crew I got to choose a few fun titles to check out and I have been saving this Lego Crazy Action Contraptions book for this trip. Before we packed up the car I slipped it in my son’s suitcase.Oh and I suggested he wear his Klutz Crew tee-shirt too and he still had no clue I had something in store for him later today! 

This book/ kit is perfect because everything you need to build 16 different projects neatly fits in this one easy to hide in a suitcase package. The instructions are bound and have great detailed instructions with easy to follow pictures for readers and non readers. Let’s face it as excited to see the kids as grandparents are they aren’t 25, heck I am not 25 anymore and I am exhausted after a trip. Having something new, easy to travel with and so easy to follow that it requires next to no help is nothing short of a blessing.

So how did it go when I did give it to him? I told him I needed something from his suitcase.

Think he was excited?

Check it out for yourself.

He chose to make a Wall Rocket Racer and it took only a few minutes to make , required one bit of help from me and then he was shooting it off the walls in my parents house and having a ball. He has already chosen which project he’s going to build next!

What toys do you pack for your kids when traveling to see family or friends that don’t have kids?

 

Follow Klutz Books on Facebook and browse all their titles on their website.

I am a Klutz  Crew brand ambassador and am compensated for my work with the company. All opinions are mine. As always I only work with companies professionally that I would recommend personally.

Lego City Book Review & Giveaway from Scholastic

Every month I get the pleasure of getting a sneak peek at the books that will be included in the Scholastic Book Club flyers that kids look forward to every month. Even better I get to choose one to share with my kids and with a reader! I know when I was a kid I poured over these like I did the Sears Wishbook, circling the books I wanted, and begging my parents for more to read. Nothing has changed I still love pouring over the book pics in each book club flyer. Last month I chose a It’s Christmas , David! by David Shannon but this month I decided to choose something geared for a slightly older audience.

 

Lego City Scholastic Reader Pack including LEGO City: 3, 2, 1, Liftoff! (Level 1) and LEGO City: All Hands on Deck! (Level 1) fit the bill. I know many of your kids are getting to the age where they are reading more independently and I have a hard time finding kids that don’t like Lego. My son has many of these books already and we’ve been really impressed. I was no less impressed with these two. I especially like the guide at the back of all the Scholastic readers that let parents and teachers see the suggested grade level,  guided reading level, Lexile level and word count.

LEGO City: 3, 2, 1, Liftoff! (Level 1) by Sonia Sander is a story about getting a space crew ready and into space. I admit I actually learned a few facts from this and so did my son. The word count is 227 words so for beginning readers it’s not too long but not so short it’s boring. The author keeps the reader engaged with simple sentences but avoids talking down to the reader in the process.  My son likes this book and because of it we’ve been focusing more on punctuation like the role of exclamation marks which are liberally used through this book. My one complaint is the lack of female mini figures. My daughter loves to have my son read her these books ( they are reading them as I type) and I wish she’d be able to see more women in the pictures too.

LEGO City: All Hands on Deck! (Level 1) by Marlyn Easton is another Lego City themed book. If you have any of the Lego City building sets it’s likely you’ll recognize a few in the illustrations. My son loved seeing ones he recognized and loved telling me which of his friends have this set or that.  I think being able to relate to a book via favorite toys is actually really positive. Some parents will be apprehensive about books that sprang from a toy franchise but at this age when many children ( boys especially) start showing less interest in books , it can be a great tool. My son loves to read but loves reading these books even more and I am all for it! This story is even simpler following a group of sailors that save a windsurfer from disaster on the water. It’s also shorter than the previous with only 160 words which is great to build children’s confidence in reading which is also key to keeping interest high. MY one complaint is the complete lack of girls in this book. I know the audience is boys but by not including a single girl the audience of girls will drop even more.

Even better than getting to read and keep these books is that I get to give both away to one lucky reader!

All you have to do is leave a comment and tell me the last book you read with your kids ( or if you are kid free the last book you read yourself).
I will choose a winner using random.org and notify the winner via email. The contest closes January 9th at 8pm PST.

Disclosure: I was not paid for this review although I did get to choose the books I received free to keep and giveaway. All opinions are mine.

Comments closed at 8pm PST any comments made after that are not valid- we have another Scholastic Book Giveaway in a few weeks!