Simple Apple-Tree Addition Game

Sep 23, 2014

As a mama, one of the things I love doing is creating fun activities to go along with my little lady’s budding interests. Right now, she’s very into creating addition problems for us to solve as a family, so we combined that interest with the fact that’s it’s now officially fall and made a very simple apple tree addition game. What I love about this little game is that we had all of the required materials already on hand, it took no more than 15 minutes to pull together, and it allows her to build on a variety of mathematical skills—all while playing!

Things you’ll need to create your own apple tree addition game:

  • 1 sheet of brown construction paper
  • 1 sheet of green construction paper
  • 1 thin strip of paper {any colour will do}
  • 12 pompoms, 6 yellow and 6 red {buttons or foam circles would work too!}
  • dice
  • scissors
  • x-acto knife {optional, but helpful}
  • pencil
  • black marker
  • glue stick

1. To get started, sketch out a treetop and tree trunk on the sheets of construction paper, cut them out, and glue the two pieces together.

2. Next, place your dice one above another on the tree’s trunk and trace around both. Be sure to leave plenty of space in between them!

3. Using your x-acto knife {or scissors} cut the holes out. Create two vertical slits below the holes while you’re at it too.

4. Next, prepare your number strip. You’ll want it to start at 2, go up to 12, and have a question mark somewhere near the middle. For this step, be sure to leave plenty of blank space at either end of the strip, as well as between each number.

5. Lastly, use your black marker to add an addition and equals sign to your tree trunk and slide your number strip through the slits near the bottom.

Now it’s time to play! Start by having your child roll a die and place the corresponding number of red apples onto his or her tree. Then, ask him or her to roll the second die and place the corresponding number of yellow apples to the tree. Invite your child to place the dice into the spots on the trunk and then ask, ‘How many apples do we have together?'

Let your child count up all of the apples, then slide the number strip to finish off the equation. Together, read the addition sentence aloud (in this case, we’d say "6 plus 6 equals 12") before clearing off the tree and playing again!

Article Author Jen Kossowan
Jen Kossowan

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Jen is a teacher, blogger, and mama to a spirited little lady and a preemie baby boy. She's passionate about play, loves a good DIY project, adores travelling, and can often be found in the kitchen creating recipes that meet her crunchy mama criteria. You can follow Jen on her blog, Mama.Papa.Bubba, and on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.