Beacon Lesson Plan Library

I Can Use a Worm to Count. Can a Worm Count Me?

Rebecca McCroan
Bay District Schools


A quick and easy way to learn how to count to 100. Lessons include literature that features worms/counting, puppets or props for daily counting practice.


The student counts orally to 100 or more.


- Book [Count Worms] by Roger Hargeaves, Yearling Books; 1982
- 11x14 sheets of Construction Paper: 1 red, 1 yellow, 4 blue, 4 green and 2 white sheets for the worm head
- Scissors
- Ruler or glass that measures 3 inches in diameter (trace around glass)
- ONE Popsicle stick for hand puppet
- 4 one inch wiggle eyes
- Laminate materials
- Paints, crayons, markers to decorate the wormís head
- Worm Head patterns in file. Pattern may be enlarged if desired
- Body parts for worm; cut 100 circles 3 inch in diameter. 10 yellow, 10 red, 40 blue, 40 green
- One permanent black marker to write numerals on worm body parts (circles)
- 100 chart with Number Cards 1 to 100
- Plastitac for sticking worm head and body part on wall.


1. Prepare LAMINATE the sheets of construction paper (except white) before cutting circles
2. Cut 10 yellow 3-inch circles and write these odd numerals on the yellow circles 5, 15, 25, 35, 45, 55, 65, 75, 85, 95
Cut 40 blue 3-inch circles and write all the remaining odd numerals on blue circles (1-99)
3. Cut 10 red 3-inch circles and write these even numerals on the red circles; 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, 70, 80, 90, 100
Cut 40 green 3-inch circles and write all the remaining numerals on green circles (2-100).
4. Download Puppet Head pattern (may be enlarged), trace 2 worm heads on the white construction paper and cut out both.
5. Paint face on both worm heads, laminate and glue on wiggly eyes.
5. Prepare one worm head for the wall and add a stick on one to use as a hand puppet
6. Prepare 100 chart by facing the numeral cards backward (Number cards represents a day at school for the students)
7. Preread literature [Count Worms]by Roger Hargeaves


1. Introduce activity with the question "I Can Use a Worm to Count. Can a Worm Count Me?"

2. Read the book [Count Worms] by Roger Hargeaves. Class discussion

3. Present worm puppetís head (Assoc. file Puppet Patterns) to students and explain how to count using a worm. Example; We will add another body part for each day of school.

4. Secure Puppet Head to wall

5. Show worm body parts (pre-cut 3 inch circles)

6. Explain that each new body part will have a number written on the circle that represents the number of days we have been in school.

7. Secure the wormís first body part to the wormís head and the classroom wall. This first body part will be blue (blue represents odd numbers) with the large number one written on one side. Make sure the written number is facing outward for the children to see it. This is the beginning of the worm that will be completed in 100 days. The worm will continue to curve around the classroom wall adding a new numeral (body part) each day.

8. Explain how we can use this worm and itís body parts counting to 100. "Today we will put our wormís head and one body part on the wall. Tomorrow we will add another body part to our worm. How much of our wall will we cover when we stick all our worm body parts on the wall and we have counted to 100?"

9. Practice Counting (total group): count all boys, all girls, and all students. Count the tables, chairs, everything in the room.
1 card is turned each day to reveal its number and represents a day at school for the students.

10. Turn a number card around on the 100 number chart and count with the children "The Days We Have Been In School". Teacher (MODELS Counting) points to number on the chart with pointer and students count the number of days in school.

11. Break into "Buddy Learning" groups (partner learning) to practice counting.

12. Return to total group and do a review, counting the numbers on a 100 chart (as group) while one of the students plays teacher and points to the numbers turned on the chart.

13. Give encouragement as students to say numbers correctly and clearly


Students will count to 100 in a one to one situation with the teacher.
The student will count to 100 with 100% accuracy.


Literacy Extensions (all books may be found at
- [How to Eat Fried Worms] by Thomas Rockwell Wonderful Worms by Linda Glaser ( April 1994)
- [Slimey to the Moon] by Stephanie St. Pierre April 1999)
- [Inch by Inch] by Leo Lionni
- [Well Done, Worm!] by Kathy Caple (October 2000)
- [My Brother Louis Measures Worms] by Barbara Robinson (Oct 1988)
- [Songs & Rhymes for Wiggle Worms] by Mary Hollingsworth, (Aug 1995)

Activity Extensions
-Field trips to dig worms and fishing with real worms
-Worm ZERO HERO visits class on days that ends in zero 10, 20, etc
-Record individual students orally counting to 10

Attached Files

Worm puppet patterns     File Extension: pdf

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