18 One on One Correspondence Activities for Preschoolers

One essential concept that lays the groundwork for future numerical understanding is one-on-one correspondence.

It is the ability to match objects or quantities with their corresponding numbers, forming the basis for counting, numeral recognition, and basic arithmetic.

Hence let’s look into some creative and captivating one on one correspondence activities for preschoolers.

“Number Collage”:

Encourage preschoolers to unleash their creativity while reinforcing one-on-one correspondence through a number collage activity. Provide a variety of magazines, newspapers, and catalogs, along with scissors and glue sticks. Ask the children to search for pictures that correspond to each number, cut them out, and glue them onto a large poster board or piece of construction paper. As they work, guide them to count and match the correct number of pictures to each numeral. This activity not only reinforces numerical concepts but also enhances fine motor skills and artistic expression.

“Counting Caterpillar”:

Invite preschoolers to create a colorful counting caterpillar while practicing one-on-one correspondence. Cut out multiple circles from construction paper and write numbers 1 to 10 on each one. Provide a set of small objects, such as pom-poms or buttons, and invite the children to glue the corresponding number of objects onto each circle. As they work their way from 1 to 10, the caterpillar will come to life, and they can visually see the concept of counting and matching quantities to numerals.

“Number Hopscotch”:

Combine outdoor play and one-on-one correspondence with a lively game of number hopscotch. Use chalk to draw a hopscotch grid on the ground, labeling each square with a number from 1 to 10. Ask the preschoolers to hop along the grid, counting each square as they go. Once they reach a number, they can place a small object, such as a beanbag or a pebble, on the corresponding numeral. This activity not only strengthens number recognition and counting skills but also enhances balance and gross motor skills.

Related: 25 Playful Butterfly Activities for Preschoolers

“Counting Jar Surprise”:

Create a counting jar surprise to captivate the preschoolers’ attention while reinforcing one-on-one correspondence. Fill a clear jar or container with a variety of small objects, such as buttons, beads, or mini toys. Attach number cards or stickers to the outside of the jar, corresponding to the quantities inside. Invite the children to select a number, count out the corresponding objects, and place them in a separate container. They will be delighted by the surprise treasures they uncover as they explore the concept of counting and matching quantities to numbers.

“Number Race”:

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Transform learning into an exciting race with a number of race activities. Draw a race track on a large sheet of paper or use tape to create a track on the floor. Place number cards or stickers randomly along the track. Provide toy cars or other small objects as game pieces. The preschoolers can take turns rolling a die or spinning a spinner to determine the number of spaces they move. As they advance along the track, they can practice one-on-one correspondence by counting the objects in each space they land on. This activity combines counting, number recognition, and a dash of friendly competition.

Related: 20 Easy Letter K Activities for Preschool

“Number Hunt”:

Transform the learning environment into an exciting treasure hunt with a number hunt activity. Hide number cards or stickers throughout a designated area, such as the classroom or a playroom. Provide the preschoolers with magnifying glasses or binoculars and encourage them to search for hidden numbers. As they find each number, they can match it to the corresponding numeral card or sticker. This activity promotes visual discrimination, number recognition, and the concept of one-on-one correspondence.

“Counting with Nature”:

Take the preschoolers on a nature walk and engage them in a counting adventure with the “Counting with Nature” activity. Encourage them to collect natural objects, such as leaves, pebbles, or flowers, while exploring the outdoor environment. Back in the classroom or a designated area, provide number cards or stickers. Ask the children to count out the corresponding number of collected items and place them next to each number. This activity combines outdoor exploration, sensory experiences, and one-on-one correspondence.

“Counting Towers”:

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Inspire preschoolers to become little architects with the “Counting Towers” activity. Provide a set of building blocks or interlocking cubes. Place number cards or stickers near the building area. Encourage the children to build towers using the blocks, starting with the number indicated on each card. They can count and stack the corresponding number of blocks to create each tower. This activity strengthens fine motor skills, and spatial awareness, and reinforces one-on-one correspondence.

“Sorting by Numbers”:

Engage preschoolers in the “Sorting by Numbers” activity to enhance their sorting and categorization skills while practicing one-on-one correspondence. Provide a collection of small objects, such as buttons, beads, or toy animals. Create a sorting station with numbered containers or trays. Instruct the children to sort the objects by placing the corresponding quantity in each container. For example, they would place three buttons in the container labeled with the number three. This activity promotes number recognition, sorting, and critical thinking skills.

“Counting with Dice”:

Bring a playful twist to counting and one-on-one correspondence with the “Counting with Dice” activity. Provide large foam or wooden dice with dots or numerals on each side. Create a game board with numbered squares or circles. Ask the preschoolers to take turns rolling the dice and moving their game pieces along the board, counting and matching the number on the dice to the corresponding space. This activity combines counting, numeral recognition, and turn-taking skills.

“Number Line Race”:

Transform the concept of a number line into an exciting race with the “Number Line Race” activity. Create a large number line on the floor or use a long strip of paper. Place number cards or stickers along the number line, randomly or in order. Provide small toy cars or animal figures as game pieces. Ask the preschoolers to roll a die or spin a spinner to determine the number of spaces they move. As they advance along the number line, they can practice counting and matching the number they land on to the corresponding numeral card. This activity combines number recognition, counting, and gross motor skills.

“Number Towers”:

Invite preschoolers to become builders with the “Number Towers” activity. Provide a variety of materials such as play dough, toothpicks, or craft sticks. Place number cards or stickers on the work surface. Encourage the children to create towers by stacking the corresponding number of materials next to each number. They can mold playdough into balls or use toothpicks to build towers, reinforcing the concept of one-on-one correspondence and strengthening fine motor skills.

“Number Hunt Sensory Bin”:

Create a sensory-rich learning experience with the “Number Hunt Sensory Bin” activity. Fill a large bin or container with materials such as colored rice, sand, or dried beans. Hide number cards or stickers within the sensory material. Provide small shovels, scoops, or tweezers for the preschoolers to explore and uncover the hidden numbers. As they find each number, they can match it to the corresponding numeral card. This activity combines sensory play, fine motor skills, and number recognition.

“Counting Bingo”:

Put a twist on the classic game of Bingo with the “Counting Bingo” activity. Create Bingo cards with numbers randomly placed on the grid. Provide counters or small objects as markers. Call out numbers, and the preschoolers can cover the corresponding number on their Bingo cards. As they mark each number, they practice one-on-one correspondence and number recognition. This activity encourages turn-taking, and listening skills, and reinforces numerical concepts.

“Counting with Stamps”:

Introduce the joy of stamping while practicing one-on-one correspondence with the “Counting with Stamps” activity. Provide number stamps or stampers, along with ink pads or washable markers. Give the preschoolers sheets of paper and ask them to stamp the corresponding number of objects, such as animals, shapes, or fruits, next to each numeral. This activity combines fine motor skills, and creativity, and reinforces numeral-object correspondence.

Sohaib Hasan Shah

Sohaib's journey includes 10+ years of teaching and counseling experience at BCSS School in elementary and middle schools, coupled with a BBA (Hons) with a minor in Educational Psychology from Curtin University (Australia) . In his free time, he cherishes quality moments with his family, reveling in the joys and challenges of parenthood. His three daughters have not only enriched his personal life but also deepened his understanding of the importance of effective education and communication, spurring him to make a meaningful impact in the world of education.

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