Nursery rhymes are a valuable teaching tool and are most often used to support literacy skills. But did you know that nursery rhymes can also be used to teach science and math? Today I’m sharing a very simple, yet powerful math game that I adapted for the nursery rhyme Little Miss Muffet.
To play the game
To play simply print as many paths as you need and cut on the dotted lines. Then, provide each child with one path and one small object to use as a playing piece. Place the playing piece on the spider to start. Small manipulatives such as Unifix cubes or flat floral marbles make great playing pieces. Make sure your manipulatives are age appropriate to avoid choking hazards.
Next, cover the sides of a foam die with blank paper and packing tape and use a marker to make only one or two dots on each side. This will allow the child repeated practice counting and matching each dot counted with a space on the path. The child will roll the die and move his or her playing piece toward Little Miss Muffet with each roll. A fun addition is to tell the children the spider is sneaking up on Little Miss Muffet and they can scream when the spider reaches her- they love this part!
This type of path game is used with young children who are just beginning to develop number sense and one-to-one correspondence skills. I use individual path games early in the school year, then, when the children are ready I transition to more complicated paths and eventually to group path games such as simple board games. This game also helps children develop the left to right tracking skills they will eventually need for reading.
To download this free printable click on the link below:
Little Miss Muffet Path Game
Stop by Pre-K Pages for more math ideas.