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Arctic Animals Teen Numbers Fine Motor Freebie

With winter upon us, teaching about polar animals is a wonderful way to harness seasonal excitement while covering important skills and concepts across the curriculum. Read on to find out how you can use this new Arctic animals teen numbers fine motor freebie to enrich your Arctic animals unit. As you probably know, I love the way teaching with thematic units keeps students engaged and curious. This simple Arctic fine motor activity gives students a chance to connect their math practice to the content knowledge and vocabulary they’re learning in science!

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Arctic animals teen numbers fine motor skills task box freebie - students use tweezers and cotton balls to play this teen number "spin and cover" game independently or with classmates

Why Focus on Fine Motor?

If you’ve noticed your students struggling with some of the prerequisite skills required for success in the classroom, you’re far from alone! (Here’s an article about a study of how media use may affect fine motor development in young children.)

Research shows that well-developed fine motor skills in young children are a predictor of academic success. Unfortunately, advances in technology have led many families away from traditional activities that promote fine motor development. The time that many children spend using computers, tablets, and smartphones is time that they are not spending building, drawing, and manipulating objects in the world around them. Many children are beginning school with a deficit of motor skills, both gross and fine.

Because of this, building time into your school day for engaging activities that strengthen fine motor skills is crucial to student success.

A Multi-Skill Approach: Arctic Animals Teen Numbers Fine Motor Skills Practice

Whew—that’s a mouthful! But that’s because there’s a lot packed into this compact freebie! Like the other My Happy Place fine motor skills task box activities, this Arctic animals teen numbers set is designed to fit into a pencil box. The free download includes a printable label, visual instructions, three spinner options, and four “spin and cover” game cards. You will need to provide cotton balls (or white craft pompoms) and large child’s tweezers.

Focus on Place Value in the Teen Numbers

To complete this Arctic animals teen numbers activity, students use one of three spinners to determine which number (10-20) they should cover on their game cards. One spinner simply includes the numerals 10-20 that the player can match to the number on their card. Another spinner includes images of ten frames representing the numbers 10-20. The final spinner includes equations (10+__) to help students associate place value with teen numbers.

Practice Independently or with Classmates

Like the other My Happy Place Fine Motor Task Box Activities, this teen numbers game is designed to be simple enough for kindergartners to work on it independently. This one also can be used as a partner (or even small group) game. Students can simply take turns spinning the spinner and adding a cotton ball. If they spin a number that is already covered, they pass the spinner on to the next player. The winner is the first player to fill their game card.

Arctic animals teen numbers fine motor skills task box freebie - students use tweezers and cotton balls to play this teen number "spin and cover" game independently or with classmates - play with a partner or a small group

Preparing this Arctic Animals Teen Numbers Activity

This simple fine motor game requires children to spin a spinner and then use tweezers to move a cotton ball onto the corresponding circle on the game board. To prepare the task box, print and laminate the spinners and game cards. Add these to a pencil box along with cotton balls (at least 11 for one player), large child’s tweezers, and some type of spinner. If you have a clear spinner overlay, you can include that. Another option is to have students use a pencil and a paperclip as a spinner (visual student directions are included for both options). You can read about various spinner options in this post.

materials needed for the arctic animals teen numbers fine motor skills task box: pencil box, card stock/laminating film, tweezers, cotton balls, spinner

Using Fine Motor Skills Task Boxes in Your Classroom

This Arctic animals teen numbers activity can be used as a stand-alone task box or as part of your fine motor box collection. These activities are perfect for students to work on independently when they first arrive at school, as early finisher activities, or any time you want your students to be productive and independent. The beauty of these activities is that students are excited to do them and also build important skills as they interact with them!

Find the Arctic Animals Teen Numbers Fine Motor Skills Task Box digital download in the My Happy Place Free Resource Library! If you are already a newsletter subscriber, check your most recent email for the current password (or simply re-subscribe). If you aren’t a subscriber yet, you can join at the link (and feel free to unsubscribe at any time.

If you’re interested in building a collection of fine motor skills task boxes in your classroom, take a look at this Build-Your-Own-Bundle! You can also purchase any of the sets individually or as a bundle on TPT or in the My Happy Place website shop.

images of fine motor task boxes

Teaching an Arctic animals thematic unit? Find many more activities in this ready-to-go unit on TPT and in the My Happy Place website shop.

Animals of the Arctic Informational Unit with PowerPoint and Printables - classroom screen with photo of polar bears, arctic animal paper headbands, printable materials

Thanks for reading! Don’t forget to head over to the Free Resource Library to grab your download!


Looking for more practice with those tricky teens? Take a look on TPT or here in the website shop at this teen numbers set!

Teen Numbers for Kindergarten: image of worksheets and activity cards

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