Counting Objects is Different Than Just Counting Outloud

When most parents think of the readiness skills needed for Kindergarten, they immediately think of reading readiness skills.  Well that is only the half of it.  Let’s not forget about math skills.  Many children arrive in Kindergarten and are very proud of their counting skills.  Children love to be able to say “I can count to 100!”  Now most cannot do this, but they think they can.  The beginning of Kindergarten usually teaches and reinforces counting and recognizing numbers.  Kindergarten teachers want parents to know that just because your child can count by memory; it does not mean he/she can count accurately when actually counting items.  We call this one to one counting and it needs to be practiced each and every day.  Just grab a handful of cereal, coins, small toys and let the counting begin. Ask your child to count the items for you and watch carefully to be sure that each item is only counted one time and not repeated in the counting process.  Your child must touch one object for each number that is counted aloud.   Most 5 year old children get stuck when they get to 14 or 15. Counting and coordinating with the hand movement is tricky but improves with practice.  When your child gets stuck, give him/her the correct number and then ask them to count again. This process takes lots of practice but in order to be able to count accurately children must have the opportunities to practice.

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