Count Your Buttons Day

Discover five fun ways to practice beginning math skills on Count Your Buttons Day. Counting, sorting, and more!

Yes, Count Your Buttons Day is an actual day and it happens on October 21st!

Count Your Buttons Day

Count Your Buttons Day is the perfect excuse to encourage your preschooler to practice their math skills.

Count Buttons on Shirts

Pull out an assortment of shirts such as baby clothes which include buttons, your preschooler’s shirts, Mommy’s shirts, and Daddy’s shirts, and older siblings’ shirts.

Now count the buttons on all the shirts together. Does your preschooler’s clothing have as many buttons as Daddy’s shirts? Who has more buttons? Who has the fewest buttons?

How many buttons are there altogether?

This is a great excuse to encourage your preschooler to practice their counting skills!

Sort Buttons

If you’re anything like me, you have a bunch of buttons floating around your house. And buttons are perfect for practicing sorting skills!

First, have your child sort the buttons by color. How many different colors of buttons do you have?

Are all the buttons the same size? No? Now sort the buttons by size!

And if you’re ambitious you can even have your child sort the buttons by the number of holes in the middle. Put the buttons with two holes on one side and four holes on the left.

Remember, sorting is a necessary math skill for preschoolers!

String the Buttons

Use a dull embroidery needle and thread to create button necklaces. Count the buttons as you string them! How many buttons are perfect for a necklace? What about a bracelet?

Have your child make patterns as they string the buttons. For instance, they could use 2 blue buttons and 4 white buttons. They could also make a pattern of red, white, blue, and brown buttons.

Stringing buttons isn’t just a great way to practice patterns and counting skills. It’s also excellent for developing fine motor control!

Now if you want to practice patterns without stringing buttons, just lay the buttons in a line on the table. Alternate large and small buttons or yellow and brown ones.

Your child will love making patterns!

Count by Twos

Dump the buttons on the table and make pairs together. And then practice counting by twos. Don’t worry if your preschooler doesn’t want to count over 10 at this point. There’s plenty of time to get up to 20 later.

For now just practice the chant: 2-4-6-8-10! Or 2-4-6-8-who do we appreciate? [Your child’s name!]

Count the buttons while chanting the above chant a few times and then send your child to run around the house. Encourage your kid to shout the chant at the top of their voice. Believe me, your preschooler will have a blast.

And they’ll also learn to count by two’s!

Add and Subtract Buttons

Don’t forget to introduce adding and subtracting buttons to your preschooler. I like to start by being silly. There are two buttons playing in the park. One more button comes to play. Now, how many buttons are there? Oh no! Two buttons have to go home for lunch. Now, how many buttons are playing at the park?

You can add and subtract buttons on shirts, buttons on necklaces, and buttons on pants.

The story doesn’t matter. What’s most important is to remember small children need concrete concepts. Show your child the buttons coming and going and encourage them to count the buttons.

Count Your Buttons Day is a fun excuse to add some concrete math to your preschooler’s day and practice their math skills.

You can count buttons on shirts and coats. You can count the buttons in a button jar. And you can even sort the buttons to make beautiful patterns or practice counting by twos.

So how will you celebrate count your buttons day?


Fill your book basket with a great collection of counting books. Most of these books can be found at your local library or used bookstore.

If you have a hard time finding them, you can order them through my Amazon affiliate links by clicking the images below.

Ten Black DotsCount the Animals!: A Fun Picture Puzzle Book for 2-5 Year OldsCurious George Learns to Count from 1 to 100


Ten Black Dots – One dot can make a sun, two dots can make the eyes of a fox, and three dots can make a snowman’s face. And that’s just the beginning in this unique counting book!

Count the AnimalsThere are several types of puzzles in the book; some focus on counting a particular animal, some on a common attribute (i.e. all the animals with tails), while a number of puzzles ask you to count two sets of animals to see which outnumbers the other.

Curious George Counts From 1 to 100 – Curious George is a good little monkey, and always very curious. Now George is curious about numbers. Counting from 1 to 10 is easy, but can he count all the way to 100? George has picked the perfect day to try. It’s his town’s 100th birthday today and everyone is coming out to celebrate!

Math Resources

This wooden number tracing board is perfect for toddlers and preschoolers. Trace with your finger, fill with sensory items, practice counting or simply play… there are so many ways to encourage number recognition with this number board!

Wooden number coins are an ideal open-ended toy for toddlers & preschoolers. Encourage your child to learn numbers and counting through play-based learning. Each set contains 21 coins – one for each number from 0-20. 

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