Lesson plan

Dalmatian Dots

What preschooler doesn't like dogs? This fun, hands-on lesson plan features dalmatians, fire safety, and matching numbers to quantities.
Need extra help for EL students? Try the How Hungry Is the Caterpillar? pre-lesson.
EL Adjustments
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Need extra help for EL students? Try the How Hungry Is the Caterpillar? pre-lesson.
  • Students will be able to recognize numerals from 1-10 and match quantities to numerals.
The adjustment to the whole group lesson is a modification to differentiate for children who are English learners.
EL adjustments
(3 minutes)
  • Tell students that they will be learning about fire safety, and matching numbers to quantities today. Remind your class that quantity is the number that answers the question, "How many?"
  • Call out an example of a question that relates to quantity. For example: How many students are sitting here on the carpet?
  • Count the number of students in your classroom, one by one.
  • Write the number of students in your classroom on the board.
  • Tell your class that today, they will be matching numbers to the amount, or quantity, of fire dogs.
(5 minutes)
  • Model the skill of one-to-one correspondence to your class, counting aloud, pairing each item with one number.
  • To model the skill, you can use counting cubes, count bingo chips, make dots on a paper with a Bingo dabber, or whatever you think will resonate with your class.
  • If you have an interactive whiteboard or projector, you can display the objects counted to the class.
(2 minutes)
  • Give each student in the class a Dog Outline worksheet, and a dabber or chips.
  • You may pre-label the number in the dog's collar, have the students roll a die, pick a number card, whatever you choose.
  • Model how to say a number name, and show the numeral to the class. Together with your students, count to the chosen number aloud. Have students clap to the number.
(5 minutes)
  • While your students are working, check on their progress.
  • Provide problem-solving strategies to help them, such as a number line or anchor chart.
  • Remind students to count and stop, "one spot for each number."


  • Provide hand-over-hand assistance with dabbers. Have this group practice clap counting before completing the worksheet. Provide manipulatives, such as pompoms, that students can use to help them with the worksheet. Draw the correct number of circles on each worksheet to aid your students in counting. Students may use counting peg boards or self-correcting puzzles.


  • Have students who need more of a challenge choose a number, write it down, and provide equal number of spots. This group can also practice basic addition by using two different colored dabbers to make dots and answer the question, "How many all together?"
(5 minutes)
  • Use the work samples to review and check for understanding.
  • Have students demonstrate one-to-one correspondence in pairs for the class. Provide them with manipulatives on the floor or magnets on the board to use for the demonstration.
  • Alternatively, have the class play the Grab Bag Numbers game.
(5 minutes)
  • Have students work cooperatively to make a big dalmatian on butcher paper or poster board.
  • Use the number of students as target number and allow each student to make one mark on the chart.
  • Have a student volunteer to write number on chart while class writes the number "in the air" with their pointer fingers.

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