It is important that your Lil’ recognizes numbers and their value. Our Fish Scale Counting activity is a quick and easy way to practice this. Our Lil’ Creators can make it more challenging by comparing two fish and identifying which fish has fewer scales after they count the scales.

Grab a FREE copy of our template and enjoy working on numbers with your Lil’.

Lil’ Explorers grab your FREE template HERE!

Lil’ Creators grab your FREE template HERE!

Lil’ Explorers Focus Skills

Algebraic Thinking

  • Count from 0-10 (1-5)
  • Understand values of numbers 0-10 (1-5)

Lil’ Creators Focus Skills

Algebraic Thinking

  • Count from 0-20 (1-10)
  • Understand values of numbers 0-20 (1-10)


  • Compare 3 sets using the terms more, less, same as, equal to, most and least

Required Materials

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Scale Counting Template - Explorers

Scale Counting Template - Creators

Step #1

Cut out the Fish Scale Counting template.

Step #2

Layout the fish with numbers on them and place the fish with scales in a pile.

Step #3

Have your Lil’ grab a fish with scales on it. Have them count the scales and match it to the corresponding fish with numbers on them.

Step #4

Lil’ Creators – once you have matched all your fish, pick two fish and compare them. Which fish has fewer scales? Do this with 4 -5 different number combinations.

Teacher Tip

Lil’ Explorers, you are welcome to try comparing fish. I tried with my daughter, she looked at me like I was crazy and just kept counting the scales. The idea of comparing fish was completely over her head.


Let us know what you think. Did your Creator compare the scales? How did they do? What about your Explorers? How did they do with the counting?