Doing creative crafts and activities with your small children is a great way to improve their motor skills, get them engaged in an activity, and encourage them to be creative. However, it doesn’t just have to be about the art that they make.
It is possible to combine a creative art activity with learning too. Painted fingerprint counting is a great way to introduce your little ones to counting and numbers through a fun and messy activity.
What Is Painted Fingerprint Counting?
Painted fingerprint counting essentially combines finger painting and counting activities. This can be a great way to introduce your preschoolers to numbers and counting or to help your slightly older kids to grasp numbers.
Painted fingerprint counting can be a fun and easy way to get your kids started with math without them even realizing it. Best of all, these activities can be freestyle or follow printed out worksheets depending on how well your child can grasp numbers.
The aim of painted fingerprint counting is to make a picture or add to a picture in an artistic way by following the numbers located on the image.
The activity works both ways to get artistic children into numbers and to get mathematically inclined kids into art.
How To Make Fingerprint Counting Crafts
There are two main ways to enjoy painted fingerprint counting crafts. You can go the freestyle route where there is very little structure other than what you provide to your child verbally.
Alternatively, you can print out worksheets that you find online to create a more structured and focused activity.
The freestyle method is better for smaller children such as preschoolers who have yet to be introduced to written numbers. With this method, you are totally in control and free to make whatever image or pattern that you want.
Some common favorites include using yellow paint to make fingerprint chicks coming out of a barn, or using multicolored paints to make ice cream cones.
With the freestyle method for this craft, it is necessary to get involved and be more hands on. You will need to talk about the number of fingerprints that the picture requires and potentially count them with your little one.
For example, you can ask your little one to paint three chicks with their finger. Make sure their fingertip is loaded up with enough yellow paint and count with them as they make the prints onto the paper.
If you are feeling extra creative you can come up with a little rhyme to accompany the picture.
Alternatively, you can let your creative little one paint the picture that they want with their fingerprints and count how many prints of each color they made afterwards.
If you want something a little bit more structured for your slightly older children, there are plenty of different worksheets online that you can print off.
There are sheets that fit almost any interest which means you can personalize them to each of your children.
The simplest of these worksheets tend to feature simple images of things such as bee hives, flowers, and buckets. There will be a number in the middle of each of these simple images.
This is the number of fingerprints that should be added to the image.
For example, they might have to add 5 bees to one bee hive and 3 to another. Or they might have to paint 4 leaves on one flower stem and 6 on another (see also “How To Make Sponge Painted Leaves“).
The buckets could be full of apples and they need to paint 8 apples in a bucket. Either way, they will have to pay attention to the number on the page to create the art.
If your child has fully grasped numbers and counting but still enjoys finger painting crafts now and then, you can print off some harder worksheets.
There are sheets that require you to paint the American flag by using the right amount of fingerprints in each color. These sheets can require your child to count as high as 50, twice.
This can be a great way to practice higher numbers and teach your child about the American flag, why the stars and stripes are so important, and what they represent.
How Does Fingerprint Counting Help Kids Learn?
Fingerprint counting is a super helpful way to help your less mathematically inclined children to learn their numbers and how to count.
Instead of sitting at a table and having to just count in order, this craft helps them to focus on counting while they think they are just making art.
The concept works in a similar way to that of join the dot activities. The child is required to source the next number in the sequence to complete the art.
With art as the motivation your child will be more engaged and they might be less anxious about getting it wrong.
It can also be a super useful way to introduce smaller children to numbers. If counting individually is too advanced, you can introduce them to numbers through their fingers.
If a worksheet requires 3 bees around a hive, you can paint 3 of your child’s fingertips and teach them what 3 looks like.
Your preschoolers are unlikely to suddenly be able to count perfectly to 50 or 100 with these activities.
However, they are likely to have a more solid understanding of counting and the sequencing of numbers when they get to elementary school. This can make the transition into school a little bit easier for them.
Combining crafts and artistic activities with learning is a great way to give your kids a headstart or a boost to their schooling (see also “5 Brilliant Name Learning Activities And Crafts Ideas To Try“).
Math isn’t everyone’s jam, but with these activities, you can ensure that your children have a solid grasp on numbers before they even set foot in a classroom and boost their confidence.