Students all over are obsessed with Counting Stews and Brews. Who knew counting and sorting could be so much FUN! Students are ASKING to play counting stews over and over. They get SO excited when I bring out a new counting stew to match our learning theme.
Teachers love them because they are easy to prep and the stew ingredients are easy to get or create. Introduce it once and they can play it over and over because the only thing that changes is the theme. Grab Counting Stews & Brews from my TPT store here.
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Now let me tell you what all the excitement is about and answer any questions you might have.
How to Play
It’s super simple and the same for every stew (no matter the theme). Students pick a card, identify each number and count out each ingredient, and place it in the pot. Once all three ingredients are in the pot stir it up and sing the song! Then take the items out of the pot and sort it back onto the tray.
How to play the game is the SAME for each and every theme which is perfect for little learners! Teach it once (or a few times depending on how young your students are) and they will know how to play it all year long.
When to Play It
Small group is the PERFECT time to introduce and teach students how to play counting stews. First I model how to play. I pick a card, say the number and count out each ingredient. I model counting out each item and placing it in my hand and dumping it into the bowl. This is an easy way to learn the skill of the last number you count is the total number of objects. I stir, sing the song, and sort the objects back onto the tray. I use private speech (I model talking through all the steps using super simple speech).
Then we make a few stews together using one pot. Students take turns counting out the items, stirring the stew, and sorting the items back into the tray.
Then I place the stew in the math center for students to play independently.
The Big Question….How Many Pots
It’s totally up to you! Put out one pot, and students can work together to make stews OR put out 2-4 pots so each student can make their own stew during centers.
What Students are Learning
This is the IMPORTANT part right! We want to intentionally plan play experiences where students are learning and practicing various skills and concepts.
Ways to Differentiate
Each stew had three levels of cards: cards with numbers 1-5, cards with numbers 1-10, blank cards. If you laminate the blank cards, students can write numbers on the blank cards with a dry erase marker.
Just added! NEW addition stew mats have been added for kinders and first grade to take these stews to a higher level! Students count out the items, place them on the math mat, create a number sentence with a dry erase marker. Then place the items in the pot, mix, and sort the items back into the tray.
Use a sorting tray to hold the manipulatives. You can find colored trays (aka veggie trays, serving trays, or chip n dip trays) at the Dollar Tree or use these on Amazon.
Stew Pots (and Cauldrons)
The pots I use are from IKEA. This set from Melissa & Doug or this set from Kidzaro on Amazon are similar. Use any pot you have on hand or check the dollar store. For brews use cauldrons. I found some at the Dollar Tree during Halloween. FOr some themed stews you can use other items instead of pot. For the Flower Stew use flower pots and mix with a shovel!
Use one pot for students to share or put out many, so each student has their own.
Use any spoons you have on hand or change it up sometimes and use mini whisks or mini spatulas. For some stews, like the flower stew, you can even use shovels!
Most stew ingredients can be found in your classroom, at the dollar store, or Target Dollar Spot. Each stew comes with an ingredient list full of suggestions and ways you can make each ingredient!
Everyone always asks where I get the mini veggies and fruits and they just can’t believe it when I tell them they are math counters! I have always been a bit obsessed with math counters because you can use them for so many themes and for so many math games and activities. These are the counters I use for my stews (you don’t have to buy these, but if you do you will LOVE them):
Yes, there is a song students can sing as they stir the stew! The tune of the song is Purple Stew. You can listen to it on YouTube HERE.
Each stew has a worksheet to go with it. You can use them or not use them. It is totally up to you.
There are tons of labels to help you organize your stews and brews. Place each stews printables in a page protector or gallon baggie. Keep in a tub or binder and use a counting stew label for the front.
Also included are labels for each themed stew and brew. Tape the individual stew labels to baggies then place the ingredients inside. Keep counters or any manipulatives you use for other themes or stews on the math shelf. I put the Stew Math Mats at the back of the tub so I can quickly grab them when I need them.
Easy Counting Assessment
Observe students make stews during centers and small group to assess their counting concepts and skills. Observe how many each student can count out independently and write it in your assessment book! Assessments don’t have to be boring! Just observe and document. Take a photo to place on a counting rubric for a quick and easy portfolio sample.
More Stews Coming Soon!
When I first created these stews I had no idea how much teachers and students would love them! My students and teachers are reaching out to me asking for MORE themed stews. I just added more stews to the pack and they will be added over the next three months!
Here are some stews already in the pack!
What are teachers saying?
“So engaging for students! This is great! I love that you only have to introduce the activity once! The only thing that changes is the theme. Materials are very easy to get for the stews. Thank you for creating and sharing!”
“My class loves them. I am so happy I invested my money in this product. I now have a math center that only changes items, not the procedure. Thank you for creating this product.”
If you don’t already have them, you can grab the Counting Stews and Brews in my TPT store HERE!
If you have any other questions about stews let me know so I can help! Here are a few in action (well kinda, I’m the one playing the game).
Love counting stews as much as I do? Pin this image!