Counting Jellyfish – Hands on Learning Activity

When I think of Jamaica, I unfortunately think of jellyfish. My husband and I visited Jamaica in 2013, and one afternoon I got stung by one of these creatures. I never saw the animal, but I sure felt it. I had burning lines across my back for days as a sad reminder of my encounter. So, as part of our Jamaica unit, I wanted to incorporate jellyfish (haha).

I was inspired with this activity by a post on my Instagram feed, unfortunately I never saved it and have no idea who to give credit to… *sigh*

It’s super easy to make – we first cut a plain paper plate in half.

Next we decorated it with bright colors. I chose watercolors because I had some in my craft supplies and my daughter hadn’t used them much. But you could use crayons, markers, stickers, construction paper – really anything!

Next (after our paint had dried) we punched ten holes across the bottom or flat side of the “jellyfish” – here we threaded 10 little strings.

I’ll be honest, natural jute was probably not the best choice, but it was what we had. You want to pick a string that is thick enough to secure the beads at the end, but also flexible to work with little hands.

I helped my kiddo secure each string, but she did most of the work herself – GREAT fine motor skills! 🙂

Next we used colored number stickers to mark each string 1-10. I found these fun prism stickers at the Dollar Store, but many craft and educational stores have similar ones as well.

Then came the fun part! I had my kiddo count out the appropriate number of beads for each string and then string them on. I tied a knot on the end after she was finished – talk about a fun fine motor AND counting activity. Also seeing visualization of numbers is very helpful for kids to see numbers visually instead of an abstract concept

Finally we decorated our jellyfish(es – because Mama made one too!) we extra sea-life stickers I had and then added googly eyes, because one can never have too many googly eyes in their life.

Tada! What a fun and interactive activity! 🙂

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