Songs are a great way to practise early counting skills. Some songs teach counting forwards (eg Dr Knickerbocker), others count backwards (eg 10, 9, 8, God is Great!). I started making a list of all the kids counting songs I could think of. This is what I came up with:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, Once I caught a fish alive
One potato, two potato
This Old Man
1, 2 Buckle My Shoe
1, 2, 3, 4, 5 (Five Fingers on my Hand - Peter Combe)
One Grey Elephant Balancing
10, 9, 8, God is Great
10 in the bed
5 little speckled frogs
10 green bottles
5 little joeys/5 little monkeys
6 little ducks
Alice the Camel
Can you think of more?
Ideas for teaching counting songs
1. Using puppets, toys or foam shapes to represent the characters in the song makes the song fun! It also allows kids to get involved in the "story" of the song and teaches them to represent numbers with objects. Mr Sociable played with some foam frogs and a stick today, singing 5 Speckled Frogs (he actually sang for us at the dinner table, while waiting for everyone else to finish).
2. Teaching kids to use their fingers while counting is good practise for addition and subtraction (eg take away one finger for each verse of 5 Speckled Frogs as the frogs jump off the log).
Do you remember singing these songs as a child? Do you sing them with your kids?