Simple math activities are perfect for zoom lessons, and this one can easily transition to a math center or free choice if you are teaching in person. I plan to hold on to this Rex Wrecks It-inspired math activity and use it when my students and I are back together in person. The activity itself is not hard but counting, and one-to-one correspondence skills are so important to use often as children cement these skills. One way I like to encourage this is with novel activities that use books we read as a theme. My students loved seeing the characters they just read about in their activity.
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Rex Wrecks It! by Ben Clanton is a must-read for preschool. It is all about a dinosaur named Rex who just can not stop himself from knocking down his friends’ towers. It is a great story because it empathizes with the children on all sides of this situation. As you read it to your students, focus on how it feels to have a block tower knocked down and the character’s faces. They are so sad. This will help as you progress through the year and deal with tower knocking down during free choice. It’s also good to spend some time looking at hard it is NOT to knock down a tower when it’s right in front of you. The book is an excellent look at self-regulation and resisting temptation to do something fun. That’s not all this book is about. It’s also about feeling included and being part of a group.
The Math Activity
Gather your materials. You will need some magnetic numbers, some unifix cubes if you are doing this in-person, a cookie sheet, and of course, the printable.
If you are using this over zoom, simply share it after reading the book. Saying something like, “Look, friends, Rex, and his buddies are back. They built some new towers. Can you help me pop the right number on each tower? Let’s count!” You may have a few kiddos yell out the answer before you can count. If that happens, roll with it, “Friends, Molly says Rex is standing on a tower with two blocks. Let’s count together to see if she is right!” Count each tower, placing the number magnets on as you go.
If you are using this at a math center include unifix cubes. Have your students place them on each block as they count. This helps to cement one-to-one correspondence which while we think of it as a math skill it is also vital for reading development. After matching them up, count and find the right magnetic number!
More Rex Wrecks It! Activities
I adore this book so I have collected many activities that go well with it. If you are looking for more here they are. Click here for this post or on the picture of Rex Wrecks It! activities.