Numbers and Counters

A detailed guide to understanding the Numbers and Counters material and how it is used within the Early Years curriculum.

How does it work?

Numbers and Counters challenges the child to arrange 1 to 10 in order and to count the corresponding quantity of counters under each number. The special way that the counters are placed also highlights the idea of even and odd numbers to the child.

Guidepost’s Numbers and Counters material contains wooden numerals 1-10, 55 wooden counters (small red disks), and a wooden box with lid.

Prerequisite Skills - Work with the numbers and counters is best introduced when a child has shown a mastery of counting up to 10 and able to associate quantities with their names including:

  • Work with the Number Rods or similar material
  • Work with the Sandpaper Numerals
Numbers and Counters - Initial Presentation

Sample lesson.

Start by watching this sample lesson from our Guidepost Homeschool platform that will familiarize you to the Numbers and Counters and their use.

If you are already subscribed to Guidepost Homeschool, scroll down to see all the corresponding lessons where this material is used in our curriculum. To unlock more than 2,000+ lessons subscribe to Guidepost Homeschool today.

How to set up.

Setup - Remove the counters and numbers from their bags. Put the numbers in the smaller compartment on the left; put the counters in the larger compartment on the right.

Check that you have 55 counters in the box, which is important for the material to be self-correcting (no counters should be left over, nor should there be any missing at the end).

At the shelf, place Numbers and Counters to the right of the Spindle Boxes and before Teen Beads and Boards.

Usage Tips - This material is suitable for use either on a work rug on the floor or at a child-height table. When presenting to the child how to lay out the numerals, place them 1 hand-width apart from each other so that there’s enough space to place the counters. See the photo reference for what the work looks like in process.

For Guidepost Homeschool subscribers

If you are already subscribed to Guidepost Homeschool, start in the order below to navigate to the corresponding lesson plans using the Numbers and Counters in our Altitude learning platform.

Wondering about supplies used in particular lessons? Detailed materials lists can be found at the beginning of each lesson in Guidepost’s Altitude system, as well as on the materials cards at the beginning of each unit.

  • Corresponding Altitude lessons

    Lessons where the Numbers and Counters are used

    Math: (3-4) Numbers 0-10

    • Numbers and Counters
    • Follow Up: Odd and Even
  • What is Guidepost Homeschool?