Counting Collections is a learner-centered activity that supports students to make sense of quantity and the number system while counting collections of objects. In preschool and kindergarten, students begin by making sense of the count sequence, one-to-one correspondence, cardinality, and keeping track of what they have, and have not, counted. As students continue counting they build on these understandings as they make use of concepts such as grouping, comparisons, skip counting, composition, decomposition, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and place value.

The videos and resources that follow may be used to explore students’ sense-making and include instructional strategies that support students as they develop number sense.

Getting Started

When introducing Counting Collections, let students know that their task is to count the objects to find out how many are in their collection. As students count, observe their process and take note of the mathematical concepts they are working on. The following questions can help initiate conversations with students about how they counted their collection.

  • How many __ are in your collection?
  • How did you figure that out?


TK: Don't forget to count (2:31)

TK: Slowing down (2:24)

TK: Touch and count (2:21)

TK: Counting on (2:55)

TK: Counting on (3:38)

TK: Counting by 2s (1:40)

TK: Sharing a strategy- counting by 2s (4:47)

TK: Partners check for accuracy by counting by tens (3:07)

1st Grade: Perseverence counting by 3s (1:18)

TK: Counting by tens and ones (1:34)

1st Grade: Counting by tens and ones (2:22)

1st Grade: Counting by tens and ones (1:16)

1st Grade: Recount collection three times to check for accuracy (2:09)

TK: Comparing quantities (4:25)

TK: Comparing quantities (1:32)

Counting Collections in 2nd Grade

Counting Collection Resources



Resources for Teachers and Teacher Educators