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5 Steps to Simple Student Gifts

December 15, 2019

As a child, I loved playing games with my family especially cards games. As a teacher, I love teaching number sense using card games. Combining basic cards games such as "Go Fish" and "Memory" along with number sense cards can build number sense skills for preschool and kindergarten children.

Playing math games are just fun! Games help younger students learn to take turns, communicate with others, develop strategies, all while building important math skills. The math concepts can be endless....number sense, number identification, comparing amounts, number order and much more!S o, lets get playing!!

I have used all types of number sense cards through my years of teaching different age groups. However, when I began teaching preschool and pre-k children I knew I had a great opportunity to introduce number sense cards to younger children and start building a great foundation of sense of number!

While I add lots of number sense activities into our daily routes. I wanted to share with parents how to help their children build number sense beyond just identifying the digit. A few years ago, I came across the games I use to play with my 3rd grade students--addition and subtraction war and it hit me. Why not adapt simple children's games using a set of number sense cards. I created a set of game cards, printed, cut and packaged them. Voila! I had my Christmas Holiday student gifts done! I was saving money, keeping it simple, and I was sharing with parents some fun games to do with their children over the holidays. I was blessed with the gift of more time, less stress and my students would be (hopefully) developing good number sense skills while playing with their family! Win-Win for me! 

Now each year I follow these 5 simple steps to have my holiday student gifts done and ready for some FUN! 

1.  Gather all the materials you will need. Because I have done this for the past few years I know when to watch for sales. Hobby Lobby is my go to for ribbon. They have a great selection and usually 50% off. Amazon for cardstock. They have the best prices, selection and it comes right to my door. I typically choose a darker color that relates to the card themes this way I can easily print on both sides of the cardstock to create the math games. I also like to attach a cute ornament or treat. Sometimes I find something while I am picking out ribbon at Hobby Lobby or this year I found these fun bells at the Dollar Tree. I thought the bell was perfect this year because we had a Christmas Train Theme.

 2. Print out number sense cards. For a set you will need 7 sheets of cardstock. To help and not confuse myself, I print one set at a time. I print number sense pictures on one side and than flip the cardstock to print the holiday themed image on the back side of the cardstock. You may also want to print out game suggestions and rule sheet as well as gift tags.

 3. Cut the set of printed cards following the cutting guidelines. Keep the set separated from the other sets you are printing. This will prevent you from having to sort through each set! 

 4. Package the set. This is the fun part! Get creative and have fun packaging your student gifts. Each year I try to change things up, but I always to keep it simple. 

 5. Give your math games student gifts to your little ones! Happy Holidays!! 


This is one of my best tips and tricks to keeping my holidays simple and stress free. How do you keep your classroom holidays simple and stress free?


More quick tidbits and tips on how I use these thematic math game cards in my classroom throughout the year. TLG4Teachers 


 Other thematic sets you will love!



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