Sort it out! The sky is the limit when it comes to finding things to sort! Candy, beans, cotton balls, paper clips... you name it! You can even change around how you want it sorted... one time, sort by color, the next time sort by size or shape! My son had a BLAST when I pulled his Matchbox cars to the school table and we sorted them by color! For younger children, you can make it easier by having 'color cards' and have them match the specific objects to the correct card. Older children can just be told to sort out the items by color, shape, etc.
Use things around the house that they already know and love! : My son has a HUGE adoration for his Thomas Trains... he can tell you every single trains name, number and color. When we started working on recognizing numbers and colors, I tried to use posters, games, workbooks, etc that would help him learn to recognize them... all to no avail! One day, we were playing with his trains, and HE asked me what number one of the trains was. Bells went off in my head and I realized that I could cater his natural curiosity about his beloved trains, and still be 'teaching' him to recognize numbers at the same time!
The parent's role in their child's math development is very important and should start as young as possible. Teaching young children how to count, add and subtract numbers in their head without pencil and paper can stimulate the brain to think mathematically. Parent s can start the process by teaching children how to count from one to one hundred. Teaching children how to mentally figure out math problems should also be part of this process.
Another strategy involves allowing your child to spend some time on a computer playing math games. The computer can be a wonderful resource that supports math and other subject area skills. Software is available that will measure a child's math skill level.