One to One Correspondence
Playful Hands-On Counting Practice
One to one correspondence is an important skill in early math and early literacy development. It refers to the ability to understand that each item represents one thing and to maintain the one-to-one match while counting objects or while reading words on a page.
In math it is the ability for kids to count along objects without skipping any - to count one more for each object. Many kids can rote count numbers, but counting objects without skipping any is more difficult. In reading it is the ability to follow along with each word on the page, understanding that each visual word they see corresponds to an individual word with its own meaning and to maintain that one-to-one match while reading.
For some fun, hands-on practice with one-to-one correspondence, try this simple count and stick activity. You'll need:
* foam sheets or pieces of paper (I used foam for a more sensory tactile experience)
* various small objects that you have pre-counted
I set out a bowl for each different type of object, but you could challenge your child more with one bowl containing all the items to 'find' first.
Label each foam sheet with a number from 1-10.
Your child needs to count out the number of objects that match the number on the sheet (if they can't read numbers yet, you can tell them the number) and glue them on.
We used small items that we had around the house. Try these suggestions:
*squares of tissue paper
*leaves or flowers from the garden
Other ways to practice one-to-one correspondence:
*Egg carton math
*Playing board games (counting along the spaces) [affiliate link]
*Counting out spoonfuls as serving dinner or playing tea parties
More playful math learning:
*Playing With Symmetry
*Simple Preschool Math Play
*Pool Noodle Patterning
*Number Recognition Travel Game