How To Teach Numbers – Children’s English ESL, EFL

Teaching children numbers and counting from 1-100 is an important part of any young learners English Class (ESL, EFL). In this post I will talk about

  • How to teach Numbers 1-10 to beginner students
  • How to teach Numbers 1-100 and beyond
  • Songs to help students learn numbers
  • Games and activities to practice numbers with your students.


There are many different ways to teach numbers. I do not think it is necessary to translate numbers to the students native language. The students will be able to understand numbers by counting. Here are a few ways I introduce numbers to young students ages 3-6:

  • I use my fingers and count from 1-10. Encourage your students to follow along.
  • Teach the numbers with flashcards
  • Count objects and students
  • Do actions and count. For example, jumping or standing on one foot and counting to ten.

I sometimes do all of the above in one lesson! It can be fun and by the end students will really begin to count in English.


I have a big soft dice in my classroom. I use this for a simple game with my students.

First, we count the numbers on each side from 1-6. Next, I roll the dice and ask the students what is the number on the top of the dice when the roll stops. My dice has numbers, but you can use any dice and count the dots.

Now it is the students turn. If you have a big class, get volunteers. For smaller classes, every student can have a turn. Be careful using small dice if you have young students. Look for a dice like you see in the picture above.


I use Let’s Count 1 to 10 to teach numbers in preschool English class and the kids love it! It’s simple and fun. Kids from 2-10 years old will enjoy this simple song and dance. 

Before teaching the song, I start by teaching the numbers from 1-10. 

I teach the numbers in a few different ways: 

  • I use my fingers and count from 1-10. Encourage your students to follow along.
  • Teach the numbers with flashcards
  • Count objects and students
  • Do actions and count like jumping or standing on one foot and counting to ten.

Next, I teach the words of the song with the actions. 

You can see the actions in the video above. It is simple clapping from side to side while counting to ten. I do this first before trying with the melody. 

Now sing the song!

After teaching the actions to the song it is now time to give it a try. If you know the melody, sing the song without background music first. Finally, add the music and sing the song with your students!

Why so many steps?

Young learners need repetition to learn. While you are doing the steps to teach numbers, keep it fun for your students. Be a little silly, smile and laugh. Also, do not expect too much from your students for a first try. 

You can download a Free MP3 of the song here and it is also available on Spotify and other streaming services!


When my students are comfortable with numbers 1-10 I begin introducing higher numbers. For numbers 11-100 I use flashcards. It becomes more difficult to count objects when you get into higher numbers.

Here are some tips:

  • Teach 1-20 first. Students may have challenges with numbers 11, 12, 13, and 15. Go slowly with these numbers.
  • After your students can count to 20, introduce 20-100 counting by tens: 20, 30, 40, etc.
  • When your students are comfortable counting to 100 this way you can count up by one and teach 21, 22, 23, 24, etc.
  • You do not have to count from 1-100 by 1s every class. I usually count 1-30 by 1s and then by tens to 100.
  • After 100 you can introduce 1,000 and 10,000 young learners have fun counting such high numbers


In the video above your students can practice counting from 1-100 by 1s and get some exercise! Give it a try.


Believe it or not I have a song and video to count to 1,000! This video might be good for your students to listen to in the background or at home.


There are so many games you can use to teach numbers. With young English learners ages 3-6 I use two simple games.

  1. Touch Game – Put numbers flashcards on the table or floor and ask your students to touch a number you say. For young learners you can start with numbers 1-3 and as the students advance add more numbers. You can also make it a competition by having two students at a time touch a number you say. The faster student wins.
  2. Quiz Game – Show a number flashcard to your students and have them call out the number they see. You can start slowly with younger students. As your students get better, show them the card quickly by spinning it around. Have fun with this.

I hope this has been helpful. Be creative and use a lot of repetition and review. I teach numbers every class. Numbers are important and it doubles as great English pronunciation practice!

Happy Teaching!
Dream English

My First 100 Words With Matt Book

I’m super excited to tell you about my new book: My First 100 Words With Matt. A book designed for young learners of English as a second or foreign language (ESL, EFL).

We worked really hard on this book to present the vocabulary in a fun and memorable way. Each chapter has ten vocabulary words. I chose the vocabulary based upon the most important words for young English learners. The vocabulary in the book follows the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

Why 100 Words?

I chose one hundred words as it is a concrete and doable goal for children. The words in this book are chosen because children will find them common in their lives. Learn Animals, Food, Vehicles, Numbers, Jobs, Colors, Family, Clothing, Body Parts, and Actions vocabulary.

It is said that with a few hundred words we can get by in a language. To be conversational, research shows that between 800-1000 words are necessary. With a basis of 100 words your young learners will be on their way to speaking English!

Look Inside! Let’s have a look at a few chapters from the book:

Free Audio and Visual Materials

I have created audio lessons to go with each chapter. You can check those out here. I am also working on videos for each chapter with chapters 1-3 already available. Students can watch the videos and follow along with each chapter. Check out Chapter 1 below. For more videos go to the Dream English Kids YouTube channel.

Students can also watch the My first 100 Words chant video with all of the vocabulary.

If you are a parent wanting your child to learn English, or a teacher of English this book is for you!

Search for the book on Amazon in your local country store.

Below are links to purchase the book in different country Amazon stores. Click on your country.

USA, UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Japan, Canada, Australia

Thanks for your support! – Matt

New Book: My First 100 Words With Matt

New Book: My First 100 Words With Matt! 🎉

Available now on Amazon. Click here to learn more!

Learn 100 Vocabulary Words in ten fun and easy to understand chapters.

Free downloadable audio resources to go with the book. Details on the inside cover.
The book goes with the 100 Words in English Chant on the Dream English Kids YouTube channel.

Build student confidence with an attainable goal of learning 100 words!

Get your copy here!



New Halloween Songs and Videos

It is time for Halloween again, it sure comes up fast every year. This year I’m excited about Halloween because I have some brand new songs. I’ve been testing these songs out in my classes and the students are already enjoying the songs. 

New Album: Good Morning Halloween by Dream English Kids

Now available on Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon music. Link here or search Dream English Kids.

Song List:

1. Good Morning Halloween

2. Counting on Halloween

3. Halloween Candy

4. Jumping on Halloween

5. Tip-Toe Halloween

6. Good Afternoon Halloween

7-12. Sing-Alongs! 

Below I will talk about some of the songs from the album.

Let’s watch the Good Morning Halloween Song video: 

I hope you enjoyed that. This song is a great warm-up song for your morning classes. To teach this I would teach the actions and the lyrics first. Then get play the song. The students will follow along quickly because it is an action song.

Jumping on Halloween. Let’s watch the video: 

Jumping on Halloween is an action song with some stops in it which young learners always enjoy.

The last song on the album is Good Afternoon Halloween: 

This is the same song as the Good Morning Halloween song, but it is for your afternoon classes. I am using this song as well and it is a great way to start the Halloween classes

I will be making videos for all of the songs on Good Morning Halloween throughout the month on the Dream English Kids YouTube channel. There are also sing-along tracks. All of the songs have a sing-along track you can use those if you want to try to have your students sing without my voice. Also, you can use the sing-along track as background music if you are doing activities or Halloween games.

Please check it out Good Morning Halloween on Spotify, Apple Music and Amazon. 

I hope you find the songs useful for your classes!

What’s New with Dream English – Week of September 21, 2020

More fun new songs and videos this week for your beginner English young learner classes (ESL and EFL). Let’s get started!

New Videos on Dream English Kids YouTube Channel:

New Songs and Albums on Spotify:

Click on the link to go to the song on Spotify. Also available on Apple Music, iTunes, Amazon:

  1. Halloween Shapes
  2. BINGO
  3. Halloween Let’s Go
  4. Santa Wears a Red Hat (Christmas Song)
  5. Christmas Shapes Song
  6. Finger Family Songs Album

That’s the wrap up for this week. Please follow Dream English Kids on YouTube and Spotify to get notified of new releases right away. Or, stay tuned for the next What’s New! Thank you for your support! – Matt

Live Concert With Matt At School or in Concert

Due to Covid-19 Live Shows are currently not possible.
If you would like to be notified when we are opening up applications again, please scroll to the bottom of the page and send us an email. We will get in touch when it is again possible to have shows. Thank you.

Matt has done school concerts in Japan, Thailand, USA, France, Italy, Spain, and Morocco for over 1000 students. Get the best experience with a Matt Live Show!


In Person Concerts fee is airfare + hotel + concert fee depending on school size. For more information, and to see if Matt is available to come to your school please send an email with the subject “In Person Visit Inquiry” to
matt @ no spaces.