Lesson Plan:

Counting Cookies!

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July 22, 2015
by Sharon Schellenberg

Learning Objectives

The students will be able to count objects to six and identify missing numbers after finishing this lesson.


Introduction (15 minutes)

  • Gather the students in a circle seated on the floor.
  • Get their attention by introducing your stuffed cat and dog. You will explain that the two critters are great friends but sometimes get into silly arguments.
  • Show the critters frolicking and playing.
  • Bring out the 6 cookie images. Show the critters investigating the cookies. This is the part where they begin to argue over who gets to eat the cookies.
  • Have the critters ask your students for some ideas. One of your students will likely suggest that they share the cookies.
  • Have the critters jump up and down with excitement over this great idea.
  • Deliberately make the cat count the cookies the wrong way by counting the cookies more than one time ending up with a much higher number than six. The dog will bark and growl over this mistake.
  • Have the dog “teach” the cat that each cookie can only be counted one time.
  • Have the dog and cat count the cookies the correct way.
  • Ask the students to predict how many cookies they think each critter will get.
  • Have the critters divide the cookies evenly so that they each get 3. Explain that this way, the dog and the cat get the same number of cookies. Invite your students to say “goodbye” to the critters.

Explicit Instruction/Teacher Modeling (10 minutes)

  • Invite your students to clap six times, pat their knees six times, and pat the floor six times to get them used to counting to six.
  • Slowly lay the 6 cookie images in the center of the circle in a random order.
  • Invite the students to help you put the cookies in order from 1 to 6.
  • Repeat this activity until every student gets a turn to order a cookie.
  • Reshuffle the cookies and take one cookie out.
  • Put the rest of the cookies in the circle, and invite the students to tell you which cookie is missing.
  • Repeat this several times with different missing cookies.

Guided Practice/Interactive Modeling (10 minutes)

  • Tell the students that they are going to get to play the missing cookie game in small groups.
  • Model how to play the game with one or two other students.
  • Shuffle the cookies and remove one from the stack.
  • Lay the rest down for the other player(s) to inspect.
  • The other player(s) will put the cookies in order to determine the missing cookie.
  • Then the players will switch roles and play again.
  • Split the class into groups of two or three and ask them to play the missing cookie game. Put students with similar ability levels together.
  • Instruct each group to take a stack of numbered cookies and find a quiet spot in the room to play.
  • Walk around the room and observe and assist where needed. Spend more time with students who seem less confident.

Independent Working Time (10 minutes)

  • Have your students sit in their table spots.
  • Show the students the counting cookies worksheet. Explain that they will count each group of cookies and write the number under each plate.
  • Hand out the sheet and work through the first two or three problems with the students.
  • Instruct the students to continue on their own.
  • Walk around the room, helping any students who are having trouble.
  • Go through the answers as a class.



  • Enrichment: Add cookies to the stack with the numbers 7­-10. You may also adjust the missing cookie game by removing two cookies from the stack. Students may enjoy decorating their cookies with markers to add “sprinkles or chocolate chips.”
  • Support: Some students may need a visual guide. You can give these students a picture that shows all of the cookies lined up in order. You can provide six counters to place on the cookies to help the student understand that each cookie can only be counted once.

Related Books and/or Media

  • BOOK: The Oreo Cookie Counting Book by Sarah Albee


Assessment (5 minutes)

  • As the students play the cookie game, you should observe each group carefully to see that they understand the concept. Take note of students who hesitate and then spend time with them reteaching the concept.
  • You will also watch as the students complete the counting cookies worksheet. Offer support where needed.
  • Collect the students' worksheets at the end of the lesson and check each one for accuracy before sending the worksheets home.

Review and Closing (5 minutes)

  • Gather your students back to the circle area.
  • As a final activity, tell the students to show with their fingers how many cookies you place on the floor.
  • Quickly arrange two, four, three, five, and then six cookies. As you do this, check each student to see that they are holding up the corresponding number of fingers.
  • Invite the students to comment on the lesson by posing the following questions: What number were we counting to? What did you think about the missing cookie game? What was the most difficult part? What part did you like? What could we do to make this game more fun or challenging?

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