Hopscotch is a great way to get kids up and moving while learning to count. It combines kinesthetic movement with visual perception and memory recall. It makes a great simple game for the first weeks of school. With a few twists, it also makes a great review game in the spring or towards the end of the year when kids start getting anxious to get outside. Here are a few ways I like to tweak the game to help kids practice counting, number sense and basic operations.
Mix the Numbers: Once my students learn to recognize the numbers 1-10, I like to mix up the numbers on the hopscotch. Then helps them learn to recognize them more fluently as they have to say the numbers quickly as they hop.
Number Words: If you’re working on reading the number words in written out form, remember that you can also make the hopscotch by writing out the words and having kids read them as they hop.
Hop as Teams: If you have a large class, you can break them into teams, and make a different hopscotch for each team with the numbers in a different order. Then have the teams rotate through the different hopscotch games.
Race to Win: You can easily turn your team hopping into a game by seeing which team can hop through the fastest. Or, if you’re working with a child one-on-one, you can work on improving their time.
Giant Hopscotch: Have fun and expand your hopscotch board to be one long game with either the numbers repeating, or using larger numbers.
Addition Hopscotch: Write two numbers side by side, and then the sum above. As students hop they will say something like “2 plus 2 equals 4.”