Math Manipulatives with Mother Goose Time

Transportation Themed Manipulatives

One of our favorite things about our Mother Goose Time curriculum is the monthly manipulatives. Sometimes these are generic in theme coming as interlinking shapes other months these are theme based. This month we got these super cute and fun chunky transportation themed manipulatives.

While there are guided activities each month that include the manipulatives, M generally wants to pull them out constantly. Walk in my living room and your generally stepping over a pile of brightly colored math counters. In the afternoons and evenings long after we’re done with school for the day we’re still carrying on our learning. In my opinion this is one of the best pro’s to homeschooling. It never really stops, we can continue an activity that she’s enjoying after our official school time is over.

Here are some of the different ways we use our manipulatives beyond the activities.

Sorting –

Sort by color

Sort by shape or type

Counting –

Count by color

Count by type

Addition and subtraction problems using the counters.

Word Problems  – we start with the included word problems and go from there.

Patterns –

Create a pattern for your kiddo to follow. Think colors and then think types of vehicles or vehicles with wheels. Challenge or simplify until your kiddo is engaged but not getting bored.

Have your kiddo create a pattern

Map –

Make a map of your living room and then mark their hiding places.

Make the same map and have your kiddo mark their hiding places.

Create a mini neighborhood with some legos and problem solve new routes to get places.

Measuring –

Use them to measure and compare shorter vs longer objects.

If you have a scale compare weights with other objects (A toy car is as heavy as 4 bears, etc)

Descriptions –

Use them to learn new adjectives like longer, shorter, lighter, heavier, etc.

The red airplane is near the edge of the table…then put it in the middle and describe it’s location again. 

Use scientific methods to compare them and make a simple graph or group. We separated by the ones that have wheels and the ones that don’t. Then we separated by the ones that go on land and the ones that don’t.

Imagination –

Use them to tell stories, see if they can match the word with the manipulative. We love our books that we get with Mother Goose Time each month. This is a fun and clever book about the duck that needs a ride. We used our manipulatives to find the matching transportation words on each page.

Disclosure – We were so excited to be chosen as an official Mother Goose Time Blog Ambassador effective September 2018. As a blog ambassador I receive the curriculum in exchange for my honest feedback and experiences using the materials. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I hope that you are encouraged and inspired to try new things with the little ones in your life.

Hopefully this has given you some new ideas on how to use your manipulatives. What ways do you use yours?


I’m a Fort Worth based mom with a passion for roasted beets, chocolate chip cookies and creating play based learning opportunities. I’m trying to set the example of a healthy lifestyle but find I enjoy coffee in my jammies more than running. I’m a work in progress and you are welcome to come hang out with me anytime.

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