I love materials that we can do a lot with. The short bead bars are one of those. You could also buy the Teen Bead Box and take out the short bead bars if you wanted to save some money. You'll need those golden tens later! I wanted to pass along a few of the games we really love and extensions.
The first one is simply linear counting. This is where you show that each bead set represents a number unit. You can introduce this after they have used the counters- four is a good target age but I had good experience with my three year old. You may just have to take it slower.
-1 is Red
-2 is Green
-3 is pink
-4 is yellow
-5 is light blue
-6 is lavender
-7 is white
-8 is brown
-9 is dark blue
-10 is gold
I started with a three period lesson for a few of the numbers at a time and added as I knew she had mastered them.
Snake Game Coloring Pages. This was a favorite. Imagine Our Life has a printable sheet she made and directions on DIY Bead materials. Montessori Print Shop has a great Bead Stair printable. The Helpful Garden has a really nice one for free. Here is another one (look below the truck) And one more at Montessori Mom You could draw circles on a paper to have them color as well. Barrett chose to match the bars rather than color the pages while Indie loved coloring them.
Make Ten. This is a pretty classic exercise where you make ten out of the different bars.
Make your Own: I'm super excited to have the kids make some bead bars by painting wooden beads and stringing them with pipe cleaners. We obviously haven't done this yet or I would have some super awesome cute photos but I think you get the idea :)