Did you see our free printable apple counting mats? Well, one of our readers asked if we had something that they could use to introduce addition. We quickly put together this free printable apple tree addition mat for them and you. So here we go our apple tree addition mats.

free printable playdough mat for addition with red and green apples Pinterest Image

Apple Tree Addition Counting Mats for Kids

One of the activities we included in our apple counting mat was the concept of one more and one less. With children that have got the concept it’s time to introduce addition to them. This apple tree addition printable is an easy way to do it.

red playdough apples made and counted onto the apple tree on a playdough mat

What you child is learning with the apple addition playdough mats

With the apple addition mats you can work with your child on

  • Using objects to add two single-digit numbers
  • Add and subtract one-digit and two-digit numbers to 20, including zero

How to Use the FREE Apple Tree Maths Printable

The printable is really easy to use. You can find it free to purchase in our store (this link will open in a new window so you can continue reading and add the addition mat to your basket) as well as lots of other print and play activities for kids.

Once you have downloaded, print out on some good quality paper – we recommend using a bright white paper and printing at high quality. This gives vivid colours and brightness to your printable activities to do with your kids.

5 red apples on the tree showing an apple counting card in place

The printable mat comes with 2 sets of counting cards – a plain set that you can use with other activities plus an apple-themed set which is ideal to laminate and use with the apple tree addition activity.

You will need to print out 2 sets of these so that you can add the same number together (great for using to introduce the concept of doubling).

apple trees used for an addition sum a great hands-on maths activity for early primary

We like to laminate our boards, first we cut out the board, this allows you to leave space within the laminating pocket so that you can hole punch and store your printable playdough mats in a binder.

With everything ready to go it’s time to set up the activity and help your child to get on their way with addition.

What Numbers Should you Start with when Introducing Addition?

One of the questions we get asked is where do you start with addition and your little ones.

The first step is to start with the one more. So you can use any single digit that your child is familiar with counting one more on from. Keep this under 10 until they are concrete with the concept of the numbers 11 to 20.

Place the number you are adding one to on the first square.

Then the number 1 on the second square and start by saying

Add one more to the number

You can then add 2 more, 3 etc…

Using the Apple Addition Printable Mats with your Child

With everything set up it’s time to sit down and work on addition with your child. We only recommend doing this in a short burst once a day.

counting out the number of play-doh apples on the tree

We sit together and pick our apple number cards to go into the boxes for the number sentence.

Then using either playdough to form the apples or like we have red pompoms place the corresponding number of apples on each of the trees.

With the apples in place and the number sentence there it’s now time to total or sum the number of apples on the trees.

adding the number of apples on the tree made from playdough together in this addition mat for early elementary math

Whilst you work with your child at first make sure you are consistent with the language that you use. As you do this activity more and other addition activities then it’s time to introduce other words that mean the same thing.

  • add
  • plus
  • and
  • total
  • sum
  • etc…

Build up to working with higher and higher numbers – sticking at first with totalling to numbers 10 and below and then move on.

Hands on Learning collage of a playdough mat for addition with kids shown

More Apple Activities to Do with Kids

If you are using these printable apple addition playdough mats as part of an apple unit with your children check out some of these other activities to do below:

toddler making apple prints
apples in barrel with a ladder in the orchard text overlay reads Apple Books for Toddlers and Preschoolers
Teach practical life skills with windfall apples - practising using a knife

Our favourite apple activity is to make apple prints – can you cut the apple to find the star in the middle?

Looking for reading materials to go with your apple unit then how about checking out the best apple books for kids.

Involve some science investigating into your apple unit with our 5 sense apple science experiment.

Why not head on a field trip to the orchard and check out these learning activities to do when you are there.

More Addition Activities

Want more hands-on addition activities to do with your kids then check out these ideas below

Quick and easy to set up maths activity for EYFS and review of single-digit addition and subtraction for older with this spring themed birds nest activity. Linked with Are you, my Mother? as a fun read-aloud for bird-themed activities.
Hands-on mathematics for supporting the writing of number sentences and getting to grips with addition using nuts and bolts.
Bugs are insects - ladybug addition with play dough part of the Story Book Summer on Rainy Day Mum
Farm themed math activity for preschooler - farmyard animal count and add
apple addition play dough mats free printable pinterest graphic
Author
Cerys Parker

Cerys is a marine biologist, environmental educator, high school teacher and mum. Realising that life doesn't have to be put on hold and you don't just have to survive whilst the kids are young she shares ideas to inspire you to LIVE with the kids, with activities to do together, recipes to cook and enjoy and family travel to make memories to last a lifetime.

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