Family Time Calendar: Counting in Candyland

Embrace the sugar-crazed madness that is Halloween and turn it into a great way for preschoolers to practice their sorting and counting skills.

What you'll need:

  • 20 or so pieces of miniature Halloween candy, in a variety of different types. (We recommend you have a pile of candy like this for each child. Feel free to raid their Halloween treat bags)
  • Piece of paper and a marker
  • Stopwatch or watch with second hand

What you'll do:

First, promise your kids they can eat a few pieces of candy when the game is through -- otherwise you're sure to be inundated with constant questioning as to when, when, WHEN they get to eat some. (Of course, they're still likely to constantly ask...but at least this way you feel like you're in charge!)

Have your kids study the pile of candy and sort the candy by type. Then have them count how many are in each pile.

Make a chart with names of the candy on it and help them write the numbers next to the name.

Put all candy back into one large pile and repeat the game a few times. Encourage your kids to sort and count faster each time. Who will go the fastest? Be the most accurate? And the prize for the winners? Candy! Or maybe a new toothbrush?

Relax and eat a piece of candy yourself. Remember how you used to put the Snickers and 3 Musketeers bars in the freezer when you were a kid. Long to do that again. Promise yourself you'll sneak a few candies from your kids' bags while they're asleep and do it again. Mmmmmm.

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