Muffin Tin Math Center
Muffin Tin Center
Here is an easy and low-prep center activity for preschool or Kindergarten students who are just learning basic counting skills and 1-to-1 correspondence. You can also use tens and ones sticks if working with older students on identifying numbers to 100.
- Gather the materials you will need – a muffin tin (or a few), cupcake liners, dried beans or other small counters, and a marker.
- Label the cupcake liners with the numbers you would like students to practice. These can be the numbers 1-12, 9-20, or any combination of numbers you would like.
- Place the cupcake liners in the muffin tin – you can choose to put them in order or mix them up – this makes is very easy to differentiate for your kiddos.
- Model the center for your students. Count aloud while putting the correct number of beans in each cupcake liner.
You may want to have students “check” each other’s work when they have completed this station.
This is a great way to talk about appropriate use of materials, especially at the beginning of the school year. I’ve found that students really like getting their hands in the beans and you may want to consider allowing them to just “play” for a few minutes before expecting them to begin the activity.
With very young learners you may just want to start with small numbers, such as 1, 2, and 3. This activity will encourage early number recognition and you can easily add on new numbers as students become more familiar.
Once the liners have been numbered, you can mix them up and have students practice placing them in the muffin tin in order. We would love to hear how you use muffin tins and cupcake liners to encourage math development in your classroom. Please leave a comment if you have a great tip to share with our audience!