This activity is great to do for a preschool unit on family. Simple graphing is usually something that preschoolers can understand, and by combining it with a topic that they love- their families- this learning exercise will definitely hold their interest.
Start by making a list of your family members (these are our pretend names in the picture above). Consider the age, ability, and attention span of your child, and then decide how extended your list will be. We used our immediate family, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins and ended up with a list of 18 people.
Next you'll make some charts or graphs for your child to fill out. You don't need a fancy printable-- grab a ruler and a marker. I made one chart for gender and one for age. You could draw little stick figures to help your child remember the categories if needed. You could also make graphs for hair color, geographic location, or eye color.
With your child, work your way down the list of family members and help them fill out the chart. Periodically you can stop and ask questions like, "How many boys do we have so far?" or "Are there more children or adults?" Show them how to read the information from the chart. Lena kept wanting to count the squares, and I kept reminding her to go to the top and then follow over to the number on the side.
When you're done, work with your child to come up with the final tally of family members in each category. My husband was genuinely surprised when Lena proudly reported at dinner that we had 9 girls and 9 boys in our family!
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