Preschoolers will have fun with this hands-on math activity as they learn to count fish with the free printable fishbowl counting cards.
Kids can learn number recognition, counting, and subitizing while having fun with fish in a fishbowl using our free printable. Each fishbowl has a number, 10-frame chart, and a written number on it that can be traced for added practice and learning.
My kids love getting out the Goldfish crackers to go along with this Fish Bowl Math Activity which is great because whenever food is involved there are no complaints. You could also use things that aren’t edible like mini erasers, buttons, or whatever else you have on hand. I laminated the cards so they wouldn’t get messy and so the printable could be written on with washable dry-erase markers (Washable Dry-Erase Markers-Thin line—these are our favorite because they always wash off).
Since my family loves fish (No joke… at one time we had 7 fish tanks) we have done a lot of fish activities that would be perfect to add to this activity like our:
10-Frames Fish Bowl Math Printable:
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- 10 Frames Fish Bowl Printable (available to download towards the end of this post)
- Counting Manipulatives (like Goldfish crackers)
- Laminator (optional)
- Washable Dry-Erase Markers-Thin line (optional)
Mini Fish ErasersPepperidge Farm Goldfish, Colors, 6.6-Ounce PackageScotch TL901C-T Thermal Laminator, 2 Roller System, Fast Warm-up, Quick Laminating Speed (White)Crayola; Washable Dry-Erase Markers; Art Tools; 12 ct.; Fine Line;; Easy Erase; Bright, Bold Colors
Print out the printables. I like to print mine on cardstock for added durability.
Laminate the printables and cut them out to make individual Fish Bowl Counting Cards.
You can use the printables any way you would like. Come up with your own activities or here are a few suggestions.
***Depending on your child’s skill level you could have them trace the number and letters on the cards during each activity. My Little Dragon (age 4) is ready for counting, but not ready for writing so we skipped the writing part of this activity to avoid frustration since this activity is geared towards math. It never hurts to add additional skills into activities like pre-writing practice, so adapt the activities to match your child.***
Put a Fish on the Dot
Have your child count along as they place a fish on each dot. This helps them learn one-to-one correspondence. Then they can point to the number on the fish bowl card.
Add to 10
Place the cards 1-6 out. Have your child roll a dice and find the matching card (rolls a 6, selects the 6 card). Next have them place a fish on each dot (6) and then count the empty squares (4). Have them repeat the sentence, “____ fish plus ____ squares equals ten.”
Fish Bowl Addition
Have your child select two counting cards and place them side by side. Have them place fish on each dot and then have them count out all the fish and place them in a bowl to determine the total of the two numbers. They could also write the equation down on a piece of paper. Little Tiger (age 6) had fun making her jump fish into the pond (bowl). She said she was freeing them from being stuck inside the fish bowl. She has such an imagination. Since she is comfortable writing numbers I had her write the equations down for writing practice.
Fish Bowl Subtraction
Have your child select two counting cards. Place the card with the highest number on the left (10) and the card with the lowest number on the right (6). Have them place fish on the dots on the card on the left (10). Next have them place fish on the card on the right by removing one fish at a time from the card on the left. The fish remaining on the card on the left is the answer (4). Have them repeat the sentence, “____ fish minus____ fish equals ____.” They could also write the equation down on a piece of paper.
GET THE TEMPLATE HERE:
Don’t see the box? CLICK HERE to be directed to the download.
Add to the fun!
Originally Posted June 29, 2017, updated 5/25/2021