I used these counting "games" this week and the students really enjoyed them.
For this game, each student needs a bowl (or work mat) and some type of "math tool" to use for counting. We used junk boxes and bowls. I let the students explore with the junk boxes about 10 minutes then they took a "museum walk" to see the what the other students created with the junk boxes (patterns, sorting, stacking, etc). Every time I would hit the xylophone, the students would put a piece of junk in the bowl. When I ran the stick across all the xylophone keys, the students would dump the bowl and show thumbs up in front of their chests when they knew how many. I asked many students to share their answer before revealing the correct answer.
I placed 10 unifix cubes in a cup for each student, then in tubs for the table. I allowed the students to explore with the cubes about 5 minutes before beginning the game. I did not use the xylophone for this game, instead I just did a repetitive action or said a phrase/word. Every time I would clap (or snap, or stomp, or say a word or phrase - their favorite was "kitty cat, meow, meow") the students would put a cube on top of the first one to create a "tower". Then they counted them, put thumbs up and I asked several students to share their answer before giving the correct answer.
I am glad that I did not use the xylophone for this activity, because we played it twice this week and the second time we played it, I decided to pair the students and let one student be the "clapper" and the other student was the "stacker", then switch. It was great to see them working together.
This is my hallway display for The Kissing Hand.
I will be posting my plans for the week tomorrow.