Repurpose extra cardboard to create a set of dominoes for your little learners! Dominoes are great for practicing one-to-one correspondence, spatial relations, and turn-taking. This activity is featured in our Fireflies® November Curriculum Guide (p. 35).
- Cardboard (box or cardboard inserts work well)
- Box cutter (adult only) or scissors
- Theme-related stickers (I used autumn/Thanksgiving stickers)
- Rubber band
Step 1: Cut rectangle shapes from cardboard with a box cutter (adult only) or scissors. You can choose any size. (I used rectangles that are about 3.5″x4″. You can measure the first rectangle and then use it as a stencil to make sure the rest are the same size. The more rectangles you cut, the more dominoes you will have.
Step 2: Use a marker to draw a line across each cardboard rectangle. Gather small stickers (chart stickers work great) to place in each domino section. (Use smaller amounts of stickers for younger children and larger amounts for older children.) Be sure to include the same amounts of stickers on several dominoes for matching purposes. Also be consistent in the placement of the stickers. For example, if you place three stickers in a diagonal fashion on one section, place them the same way on all the other sections demonstrating three that you create.)
Step 3: Once all the dominoes have been created, place them on a tabletop in front of the children. Choose one domino and place it on the table away from the other dominoes. (Dominoes take up a lot of space, so be sure you have a large working area.) Have the children count the number of stickers in each section of the domino. Then, ask one of the children to find another domino that has an end with a matching number of stickers in it. Place that domino next to the first domino so that the matching set of stickers lines up. Continue matching dominoes together until they are all gone.
Note: Depending on how the dominoes are placed, you may need to reconfigure a few in order for all dominoes to be utilized. You can either challenge the children to reposition the dominoes or allow extra dominoes to go unused. If necessary, create additional domino pieces with necessary amounts of stickers.
Step 4: When you have finished the activity, wrap a rubber band around the dominoes to keep them together for future use.
Adaptation: If you have younger children in your setting, simplify the dominoes by placing one assorted theme-related sticker in each domino section. Then, challenge the children to match the pictures together.