STEM in Preschool with Dr. Seuss Inspired Counting Journal

by Meghan

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Ten Apples Up on Top has been one of the girls’ favorite books for as long as I can remember.  It started with the board book version, and now my youngest takes the full  ‘Apples on Top’ book to bed with her almost every night.  Using a favorite book is a super easy way to incorporate STEM in preschool activities.  Leverage your little learner’s pre-existing interest to expand their learning to a new subject area – like math – with this simple counting book.

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STEM in Preschool

Preschool is a great time to introduce early concepts in math and science. And I love to start these discussions with picture books the girls already know and love, like Ten Apples Up on Top. Stories help bring these concepts to life for young learners. To introduce numeracy skills, like number recognition, formation, and one-to-one correspondence with my preschoolers, I created a Counting Journal to go along with the famous Dr. Seuss book.

Journals are a great way to provide a structured learning experience for preschoolers, while still allowing them to work and learn independently. I also love that it creates a lasting resource they can reference over and over.

Counting Journal Supplies

To make your own Ten Apples Up on Top Inspired Counting Journal, you will need a few basic supplies.


PGPB Counting Journal Printable
Crayola 64 Count Mini Markers
2 Dice
Small, apple stickers

Cost: Less than $5
Prep Time: Less than 5 minutes
Clean-Up Time: Less than 5 minutes

I am also a huge fan of Crayola’s mini washable markers.  They come in a 64 count set, like the giant crayon assortments, they are perfectly sized for toddler and preschool hands, and their smaller size also helps force proper pencil grip.  Our apple stickers for this activity came from the Target Dollar Spot about a month ago, but you can find a similar set here.

Reinforcing Number Recognition

Big M, at nearly 4, can count well beyond 10.  This counting book, however, was a great way to reinforce number sense and varying symbolic representations of numbers.  It also incorporates some fine motor skills, asking preschoolers to draw themselves on every page, and peel and place small stickers as well.  Confession – I am thoroughly amused by preschool self portraits.  I love the way they draw people evolves from age 2 – 4.  Big M is currently at the big head with arms and legs emerging directly from the head stage.  Love it!

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There is one number per page.  With each number, they must draw a person, place the correct number of apple stickers on the page, and place a die, or dice as the numbers get bigger, to represent the number.  This was the first time I introduced Big M to the concept of combining 2 dice to represent numbers larger than 6.

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What are some of your kids’ favorite books?  I love how much my girls love books… and Lil’ M cracks me up every time she proclaims ‘I read to self!’

STEM in Preschool - Counting with Dr. Seuss Ten Apples SQUARE

Celebrate Dr. Seuss’ Birthday

Want more Dr. Seuss fun? Make your own Cat in the Hat hat to celebrate Read Across America Day!

Want more Math Ideas for Kids?

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out our latest eBook, ABCs and 123s, featuring 40+ hands on, play-based learning activities featuring letters and numbers for your preschooler!

You can find this and all our Book-Inspired activities here, and on our Pinterest board, Read! Read! Read!

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STEM in Preschool - Dr Seuss Counting Journal

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Document your child's numeracy skills with this Dr. Seuss Inspired Counting Journal. Work on numbers from 1 - 10, covering numeral formation, number words, one-to-one correspondence and die dot patterns. A simple STEM lesson plan for preschool

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