Posted by on May 17, 2013 in Bugs, ladybugs, Math Activities, Painting, Rock Activities, Spring Crafts and Activities | 0 comments

For Mother’s Day brunch, M helped me paint these cute, little ladybug rocks to put on the kids’ plates.

ladybug rocks  ladybug rocks

ladybug rocks  ladybug rocks

I also picked up some faux stonecrop from Dollarama to use as a spring inspired table runner for the adult table.

Mother's Day brunch

Even though Mother’s Day is behind us, I decided to leave the table runner and painted ladybug rocks out for the kids to enjoy, and to help spark some imaginative play, while they are waiting for their food. Both of my boys love playing with these sweet bugs!

ladybug rocks  ladybug rocks

Ladybug Math Game

It was a rainy afternoon when I came up with this fun math game that uses the ladybug rocks as manipulatives.

First, I cut out some leaf shapes from green construction paper and wrote some unfinished addition and subtraction equations on them. Then I cut out some little, pink circles, and wrote a number from 0-10 on each one to serve as the answers for the leaf equations.


We started with the concept of adding two numbers together. M chose a leaf with an unfinished addition equation and built it using the ladybug rocks as manipulatives. For this activity I drew M’s attention to the ‘plus’ or ‘addition’ symbol and told him that whenever he sees this symbol it means there is going to be more of something. Before he added the second number (addend) of ladybugs to the stonecrop pad, I would ask M “how many ladybugs are coming to visit the other ladybugs?” Once he had added the correct number of ladybugs I would say “there are now more ladybugs than before. How many ladybugs are there all together?” After counting the total number of ladybugs, M then had to identify the number from the cutout circles and place the correct answer, after the equals sign, to complete the equation.

ladybug math game  ladybug math game

ladybug math game  ladybug math game


M liked the addition game so much that we moved onto subtraction as well! I pointed out the subtraction symbol to him and told him that whenever he sees this sign it means there is going to be less of something because you are “taking away” from the first number (minuend). He started by picking a leaf with an unfinished subtraction equation on it, and built the first number by placing the corresponding amount of ladybug rocks onto the stonecrop pad. Next, I asked him “how many of the ladybugs fly away?” and pointed to the second number (subtrahend). M responded by taking the correct number of ladybugs off of the stonecrop pad. The final guiding question I asked was, “how many ladybugs are left?” M counted how many ladybugs remained, found the corresponding number, and then finished the equation on the leaf by placing the correct number after the equals sign.

ladybug math game  ladybug math game

ladybug math game

I’m thrilled M enjoyed playing this math game as much as he did! Just this morning he asked to play the “ladybug game” again, and I couldn’t help but smile.

One of M’s favourite books is The Grouchy Ladybug, by Eric Carle. Here are some activities we’ve done in the past around Eric Carle’s The Grouchy Ladybug, and  The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Click here for more bug inspired activities!

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