If you have a train fanatic in your house or preschool you need this train game for kids. It teaches counting and color recognition, as well as basic graphing. You can grab your own FREE printable of this game at the end of this post!
Math Activities for Preschoolers Using Train Game Printable
With five kids, I always feel like we have a ton of toys. A ton! When I calm down enough from the constant messes, I don’t think we have too many. But sometimes the mess of five kids playing (and forgetting to put their toys away) is overwhelming.
You know the feeling.
I do rotate toys, but in addition to that, I have another trick I use to keep the toys at bay.
Ready for it?
I seldom buy new sets of toys anymore. When birthdays and holidays roll around, I purchase toys that add to the sets we already have.
Now, I have two little boys who will play trains all day long. All day. Even my oldest, who is eight years old still loves to play trains with his little brothers. And my daughter loves to play trains because she is artistic and sees designing train tracks as artwork.
I’m not sure what this year’s hottest toy is on the market, because I’m busy adding to our train set. We have lots of different tunnels and bridges. We have wooden tree accessories and street signs. We have hills and lots of risers.
And…now we have printable train games like this one! And one of the major benefits of this train game printable is that it teaches:
- counting and numeracy
- color recognition
FAQ About Teaching Graphing in Preschool
Teaching graphing in preschool has many benefits. Teaching children how to graph at a young age helps them understand how to look for and collect data, identify patterns, and make predictions.
Graphing also gives preschoolers an opportunity to indirectly practice other mathematical and cognitive skills such as estimation, sorting, organizing, counting, classifying, problem solving, and comparing. It also develops spacial awareness.
There is a lot of overlap in sorting skills and graphing. So, to teach preschoolers how to graph — how to organize data — they must first be able to proficiently sort.
Sorting skills include sorting by a single attribute, like color, and then by more attributes. To teach a preschooler how to graph, you teach them how to organize the sorted materials.
Be sure to read this post: The Ultimate Guide to Comparing and Sorting.
Preschool lesson plans in graphing should include a wide range of age-appropriate graphing practice. Preschoolers are capable of learning pictograph, bar graphs, and line graphs, so those should all be included in a Preschool Graphing Unit.
Rainbow Train Preschool Counting Game
My little train fanatics had so much fun with this game. We played it a few times right in a row, but finally had to clean up and my four year old said, “Can we leave it out so we can play with the whole family?”
Absolutely! Even though it’s a preschool counting game, my older kids loved this train game, too.
This game teaches color recognition, counting skills, and even a little graphing, as well as taking turns and following rules.
And, might I add that this is a perfect game to play for St. Patrick’s Day!
- FREE printable (at the end of this post)
- game pieces
- homemade die (numerals 1-3)
- rainbow color buttons
Print and laminate the train printable. Cut the train tracks along the black lines, and assemble in order to make one very, very long train track. (This was fascinating to my boys since the track ended up being about four feet long!…Super cool if you’re four years old!)
Give each player a graphing scorecard and a game piece.
How to Play Rainbow Train Counting Game
Because this game teaches the colors of the rainbow, it was great our St. Patrick’s Day party, too!
Play is simple and straight-forward. This is not a game where there is a real winner. Rather, players work to collect buttons for their “train”.
- Select a player to go first. Roll the die and move the game piece the corresponding number of train tracks.
- Identify the color of the train track and find a matching colored button.
- Add the button to the corresponding column on the graphing score sheet.
- Continue play until all payers have reached the end of the track.
- Count how many of each color was collected.
I like to use a 1-3 die for this game for a couple of reasons. This game is excellent practice for learning one to one correspondence skills, so a 1-3 die works nicely, especially for young preschoolers who are just learning.
Since one to one correspondence is one of the most important math skills a preschooler learns, a 1-3 die is great reinforcement! Plus, a die with smaller numerals makes the game last a little longer, which means that the children get to spend more time working on their graphing skills!
Get Your FREE Rainbow Train Counting Game
Think this is something your preschooler will adore? (Just trust me, the answer is yes). You can get your own copy by clicking the picture below. Do you have a favorite preschool counting game the kids love?
More Color Activities for Preschoolers
I’m always on the lookout for more sorting and color activities for preschoolers. Here are some more for you to try, including activities with mixing colors and working fine motor skills.
More Preschool Counting Activities
There’s nothing better than combining multiple skills into a single activity. How about color matching and sorting activities in one? What if they taught counting skills, too? And what if they included a sensory element like play dough or pom poms? I’ve got you covered.
I’m Sarah, an educator turned stay-at-home-mama of five! I’m the owner and creator of Stay At Home Educator, a website about intentional teaching and purposeful learning in the early childhood years. I’ve taught a range of levels, from preschool to college and a little bit of everything in between. Right now my focus is teaching my children and running a preschool from my home. Credentials include: Bachelors in Art, Masters in Curriculum and Instruction.