Play Dough Addition

 

E still likes to work on her addition facts, so after the Preschool Addition Game with Chicks and Eggs and the Owl Addition 1-10 printable, we came up with another way of learning about them in a hands-on way: Play Dough Addition!

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

(E was 4 years and 4 months old.)

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Materials for Play Dough Addition:

  • Play dough. {Different colors optional.}
  • Number cookie cutters.
  • Beads, gems or similar small manipulatives.

 

E has played with play dough a LOT over the last several weeks, so it was only natural to use it for learning activities she’s interested in.

We started with a batch of fresh homemade play dough in rainbow colors that was very inviting. Store-bought play dough works just the same, of course, and you don’t even need different colors.

E picked two numbers and cut them from the orange play dough with her cookie cutters.

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

We talked about the plus and equals signs, and E cut those from purple play dough. {The cookie cutter set I linked to in the materials list has those signs but if you don’t have them, just roll a few short “snakes” to make the signs. We weren’t able to find the equals cookie cutter and used the dash/minus sign instead.}

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

E read the equation, then placed the appropriate number of heart beads into each play dough number to find the sum.

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

She chose to cut the resulting number from blue play dough, then read the entire equation. {She doesn’t have that last part quite down yet but she’s getting there.}

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

She wanted me to pick the next two numbers, and I picked 4 and 3.

When she’d cut the 4, though, she noticed that we now had 1, 2, 3, 4 on the table.

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

For her, there was no question that we now had to use number 5 rather than what I had chosen 😉

She used glass gems as manipulatives this time.

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

Simple Learning Activities for Kids: Play Dough Addition - math, sensory and fine motor all rolled into one!

 

Have you tried Play Dough Addition? What’s your favorite hands-on addition activity? Leave a comment below!

 

For kids who aren’t up for addition yet, here’s a more basic math activity using play dough:

Exploring Numbers with Play Dough.

 

 

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5 Comments

  1. We already have number cookie cutters. What a great way of putting them to use! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Jacinta Luppino says:

    simple yet effective idea! really love it!! Currently doing Certificate 2 in Children’s Services and now i wish that i found this activity to do sooner for my assessment that im currently working on right now. but im sure there are plenty of other times i will be able to use this simple yet effective idea. thanks for sharing. i’ll be sure to make a note of your website.