Counting Nature

This nature-based counting activity for kids features printable nature cards to increase the hands-on fun. On these warm spring and summer days, this is the perfect activity to get your kids out into nature and away from the TV. The best part is, it’s completely customizable.

Printable Nature Counting Game wwith rocks, flower petals and gam dice

How to assemble the nature counting activity:


  • printable nature cards
  • at least 6 different groups of items collected from nature (10-12 of each item)
  • organizing tray
  • die (or dice)


First print the nature cards and cut them out.

Related Read: Forest Animal I Spy Counting

blue sorting try with a variety of different nature items and game cards

Then, take a nature walk to collect all the items you will need for counting. You only need six different kinds of items, but there are 8 nature cards, just in case you can’t find a particular item on your walk. The items to gather include acorns, grass, leaves, wildflowers, flower petals, twigs, pine cones, and stones. For each item that you collect you will need at least 10-12 pieces.

Once you have collected your items, place each group of items into a separate tray compartment to keep them organized. Place the stack of nature cards in the center of the tray and a die or 2 on the table.

game dice, real flower petals, and matching flower petal game card

To play the counting game, have your kids draw a nature card to see which item they will be counting. Then, they will roll the dice to see how many they need to count. For example if your child draws the twigs card and rolls a 6, the child must count out 6 twigs.

Related Read: Spray Bottle Nature Art

real green leaves and matching game card

This process allows the kids to practice counting in two ways: counting the dots on the dice, and counting out the actual nature item. If you use dice with actual numbers, instead of dots, you can work on number recognition and counting.

If your child is not yet ready for counting, a great activity would be to simply match the object to the picture. For example, matching a leaf to the leaf picture. You can also check out another awesome nature counting activity, from Rain or Shine Mama. 🙂

Happy Learning!

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Written By
Erica Cardinal
Erica is a long-time resident of East TN and the founder of East TN Family Fun. She's also a sucker for a good adventure. Together with her hubs and kiddos, she spends her time exploring, homeschooling, and making memories.

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