BlogMath for KidsHow to Teach Kindergarten Math: Concepts, Tips, & Strategies

# How to Teach Kindergarten Math: Concepts, Tips, & Strategies

Wondering how to teach kindergarten math? It is often mistaken as something anyone can easily prepare and teach. It’s maybe because skills seem basic at a glance.
Imagine a classroom filled with students at different stages of learning—some kids are counting with ease, while others are learning to hold a pencil. Teaching kindergarten math skills involves considerable preparation. There’s rarely a break, so you need to think on your feet and have a variety of activities ready in your pocket to keep little ones happy and engaged!

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Watch your kids fall in love with math & reading through our scientifically designed curriculum.

This guide is designed to support you every step of the way, whether you’re a kindergarten teacher or a parent, offering a clear breakdown of what kindergarteners learn in math, common challenges, and effective teaching strategies to build a classroom of self-starters. Plus, find a wealth of FREE resources for teachers, including:

## How to Teach Kindergarten Math

Let’s dive into important kindergarten math topics and explore how to teach kindergarten math in a fun and engaging way!

### 1. Number Recognition, Counting, and Comparing Numbers

When math is taught in kindergarten classrooms, more instructional time is dedicated to learning numbers and cardinality. Number sense isn’t something you can simply pour into a student’s mind. It’s that inherent and intuitive understanding of numbers developed through experiences!

Remember: little ones thrive on the “learning by doing” approach. Include fun activities and educational games in your daily math centers or lesson warm-ups, such as:

• Counting lots of things up to 20 (stairs, chairs, marbles, and more!)
• Writing numbers to show how many things they counted.

Subitizing is another crucial part of kindergarten math concepts—an ​​ability to recognize the number of objects using patterns without counting (e.g., looking at 8 objects as 5 and 3). Here are some games to boost subitizing skills:

With some planning, fun resources, and hands-on activities, you can make learning numbers a joy for you and your classroom! Building on this understanding and inspired by teachers’ advice on what effectively works with 5-6-year-olds, we have created a fun collection of ready-to-deliver and FREE lesson plans for teachers.

It may not be an easy ride, but walking into the classroom a little prepared gives a confidence boost (you know this feeling!). Here are some common challenges students might encounter with numbers and counting:

Combine number sense practice and assessment in one easy-to-use resource with printable fun worksheets! These printables feature pictures, visuals, and engaging layouts that keep kids excited while reinforcing essential numerical skills.

Bonus Tips:

1. Try this online Counting Numbers Teaching Tool. It’s free to use and perfect for demonstrating one-to-one correspondence. Drag objects (birds, counters, and more!) into a box and let your class count with you!
1. Many teachers love using manipulatives like blocks, counters, and beads in class. Allow children to touch and move objects as they count, sort, add, and subtract. This hands-on teaching method is also effective because it involves kids’ direct participation.
`Related Reading: Best Number Activities for Preschoolers`

NOTE: In kindergarten, the following types of addition and subtraction problems are taught: add to (result unknown), take from (result unknown), and put together/take apart (total unknown or both addends unknown).

A teacher once humorously shared that teaching addition and subtraction to kindergarteners feels like explaining taxes to adults! This highlights how teaching basic math to little ones can be challenging, considering the diverse learning styles, varying skill levels, and unique challenges each kid brings to the classroom. Let’s simplify this.

• These concepts can be abstract for kids. Sitting them down with pencils and notebooks will not work. Asking them to memorize addition and subtraction facts will not work either.
• Help them see it before they solve it! Kindergarten is the perfect time to start teaching kids how to think in math language!
• Use direct modeling strategies, such as counting all, counting on, counting back, doubles, taking away, fact families, and more.
• Encourage kids to think about the logic behind addition and subtraction. Instead of just making them add and subtract numbers, teach them what these operations truly represent.

The goal is to help kids achieve math fact fluency—accuracy, speed, and confidence! Instead of solely focusing on “right” answers, celebrate students who are “almost” there! If you are having an idea block, that’s totally normal! Try our Addition and Subtraction Lesson Plans for Kindergarteners. They will supercharge your lessons!

Help kids visualize abstract concepts like “putting things together” and “taking objects away.” Learning games build confidence and motivate kids to learn through powerful animations and quick feedback! Try interactive addition and subtraction games as reinforcement tools in your kindergarten classroom.

Supervised practice is key to mastering addition and subtraction—no instant magic fix exists. These printables are crafted to provide the extra support kids need to develop these essential math skills.

Bonus Tips:

1. This Hundreds Chart Teaching Tool is a free tool for teachers. Use colors to highlight or hide numbers. By counting forward or backward, show kids what “adding 2 more” or “taking 4 away” looks like.
1. Math facts practice: This tool is perfect for online practice. Here are some fantastic features:
• Completely FREE for teachers!