Simple autumn preschool math activity

autumn tuff tray full of conkers, leaves and pine cones with overlay text reading Autumn preschool math activity

Do your children love collecting conkers, acorns and leaves? I know mine do. If so then they will love this autumn tuff spot which can be adapted for various ages and can include a simple autumn preschool math activity. This is one of many autumn activities for preschool, click through to find many more.

Autumn leaves and conkers with number cards. Overlay text reads autumn preschool math activity

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Autumn preschool math activity

This math activity is suitable for preschool and reception children but it can be adapted easily for older children and for younger children too. My children loved playing in our tuff spot filled with “autumn treasures” and the addition of a set of autumn number cards made it a fun learning activity too. I’m sure your children will love it too.

Read on to find out how to set up this simple preschool autumn maths activity. It’s a great way to do some seasonal learning through play.

Setting up the autumn tuff spot

Tuff spot filled with leaves, conkers and preschool resources

One of the great things about this activity is that it’s two activities in one. The first activity is to go out on a nature walk to collect lots of autumn natural elements to add to your tuff spot or sensory bin.

We collected a variety of different types and coloured leaves, acorns, conkers and pine cones. We even had some conkers that were still in their shells too. Just take your preschooler on a walk armed with their autumn treasures collection bag and see what you can find. You’ll need to take a larger bag for yourself as you need quite a bit of natural materials to fill your tuff tray. 

Pine cones, conkers and leaves with number cards

Once back home, add the items to your * tuff spot along with a few basic tools (see below) and a set of autumn number cards (which you can download by joining my mailing list at the end of this post).  

What you need to create your autumn preshool maths activity

Delivering the Autumn preschool math activity

For preschool and older children, there are lots of learning opportunities using the autumn number cards. These activities are great for counting and number recognition. You can adapt the activities to your child’s age and abilities.

Don’t overwhelm young children with numbers. Perhaps start by just including numbers 1-5 or 1-10 and build up to 1-20 when they gain knowledge and confidence.

Here are a few more ideas for preschool fall math activities to get you started.

You might like to start by simply allowing your child to explore the tray. They may decide to practice using the tweezers or they may simply enjoy scooping and filling the bowls. Talk about the colours, textures and name the items in the tray too.

bowl with conkers in

Ask your child to find a particular number in the tray and see if they can recognise it.  

Talk about the number on any card that they pick up in the tray. Can they correctly identify which number it is? If not then simply tell them the number and continue. This will help them to learn to recognise the different numbers.

Find all the numbers in the tray and see if they can put them in the correct order to create a number line. Again remember to make it age appropriate start with 1-5 and build up.

autumn illustrations with the numbers 1- 8 on them in the correct order

Use different natural materials from the tray like the conkers to count and match the correct number of conkers to the number on the cards.  

3 cards with illustrations and a number (1, 2, 3) and the coresponding number of conkers

Here’s a video of my toddler and preschooler enjoying this autumn maths tuff spot.

How to make autumn number cards

Sign up to my email list below and download your autumn number cards. The set includes 20 numbered, hand-drawn autumn illustrations (5 different designs).

Print them out and then you could laminate them and then cut them out. You don’t need to laminate them but I would recommend printing them on card if you decide not to laminate them. Laminating them makes them wipe clean and makes them a little sturdier and more durable so you can use them all autumn.  

Join my email list and get your free autumn number cards

Sign up to my weekly email list and download your free 1-20 autumn number cards to use in lots of great fall preschool maths activities.

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tray filled with conkers, leaves, large children's tweezers and bowls

Fall preschool math activity

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Active Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 40 minutes
Difficulty: easy

Materials

  • Natural materials like pine cones, conkers & fallen leaves
  • Printable autumn number cards

Tools

  • Children's tweezers
  • Bowls
  • Scoops

Instructions

  1. Go on a walk, taking a basket or bag with you to collect plenty of autumn treasures.Pine cones, conkers and leaves with number cards
  2. Add all your natural materials to a tuff spot or similar.Tuff spot filled with leaves, conkers and preschool resources
  3. Add scoops, tweezers, bowls and the number cards.
  4. Let your child explore the sensory bin.bowl with conkers in
  5. Talk about the natural materials and also the numbers.autumn illustrations with the numbers 1- 8 on them in the correct order
  6. Use the cards to work on number recognition and counting.3 cards with illustrations and a number (1, 2, 3) and the coresponding number of conkers

Notes

Here are some simple math activities to try.

Can your child find the number you ask them to?

Can they recognise the number on the card they have selected?

Can they put the number cards in the correct order?

Can they place enough natural materials by the number card to match the number?

Recommended Products

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More autumn fun

Find my favourite Autumn books for toddlers here.

Looking for more Autumn outdoor activities for kids? Find my favourites here.

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12 thoughts on “Simple autumn preschool math activity

    • Claire says:

      Did you see the video? That’s exactly what my 2 year old did although I think she is getting a little better at not eating things she shouldn’t.

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