Number Sounds

What does a number sound like? The first step in familiarising children with numbers is to help them recognise the sound of the number words, from 1 to 10. And that means lots of counting! Chant rhymes and sing counting songs, find some basic counting board books to enjoy together, and count as you go about your daily activities.

Number Sounds Day to Day

  • Count everything! Count objects, steps, plates on the table, cookies on a plate, apples in the basket, fingers, toes, children ...
  • Vary the way you count. Count slowly, count fast, count with a crescendo at the end! Whisper and count.
  • Count with movement. Stomp and count. Clap and count. Jump and count.
  • Read favourite stories like The Three Little Pigs, The Three Billy Goats Gruff and Goldilocks and the Three Bears. Exaggerate the numbers.
  • Sing and chant counting songs and counting rhymes and nursery rhymes. There are some wonderful videos available of counting songs, rhymes and stories which you can enjoy together. We've gathered together a collection here.

Involve numbers in everyday life and soon children will begin to recognise the sounds of numbers. Some may start to understand how they are used and relate the number name to what is being counted  - one to one correspondence, another crucial stage of learning.

Our Resources

Five Currant Buns Printable

Five Currant Buns Printable

Sing along (or just read, if you prefer) to the traditional song, Five Currant Buns. It is great for familiarising children with the numbers 1 to 5, and also, of course, is an early introduction to "taking away" or subtracting.

Five Currant Buns Role Play Activity

Five Currant Buns Role Play Activity

Use this lovely printable for a role play activity along with the song Five Currant Buns. Print onto card and cut out, laminating for durability if you wish. You could attach velcro to the back and use on a felt board, too.

Five green speckled frogs

Five Green Speckled Frogs

Here's a fun printable for Five Green Speckled Frogs. Print onto card, magnetic printer paper or printer felt and use to accompany the popular children's song / rhyme.

This little frog rhyme

This Little Frog Rhyme

This traditional Chinese counting rhyme builds cleverly builds in some times table practice. We've done up to four frogs (there are four pages) but you could go much further! We've produced a second version which leaves the numbers blank for the kids to fill in, too...

Next Step ...

Number Symbols
Number Symbols

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