This is a colorful and fun counting activity! Children create a work of art as they stamp scoops of colorful ice cream onto ice cream cones. They will combine counting, color recognition, and fine motor skills as they stamp. This activity comes from “Recycle and Play: Awesome DIY Zero-Waste Projects to Make for Kids” by Agnes Hsu.


Supplies Needed:

  • Paint (poured out on a paper plate)

  • Brown paper cut into ice cream cones

  • Glue

  • Bubble wrap

  • Toilet paper tubes (depending on how many ice cream scoops you want)

  • Rubber bands (to go around your tubes)

  • Paper

  • Scissors


Step One: Cut the brown paper into cone shapes and glue them to your paper.

Step Two: Wrap the pieces of bubble wrap around the toilet paper tubes. Make sure you have enough tubes for each color you plan to use.

Step Three: Dip the bubble wrap into the paint. Make sure it’s evenly coated, and then stamp the scoops of ice cream in any color order you’d like them.


  • Count the scoops of ice cream on each cone, then count the total number of scoops.
  • Identify the colors on each ice cream cone.
  • Enjoy your creation!

Useful Resources:

Recycle and Play: Awesome DIY Zero-Waste Projects to Make for Kids by Agnes Hsu

Recycle and Play transforms what many might consider trash-cardboard, bubble wrap, egg cartons, or plastic wrap-into invitations for zero-waste playful learning.

Butterfly Counting by Jerry Pallotta

Count from one to twenty-six and learn about the many different kids of butterflies in the world. Gorgeous art by Shennen Bersani brings these beautiful insects to life, and Jerry Pallotta’s signature humor and amazing facts make this a great read for all ages.

Art 123: Count from 1 to 12 with Great Works of Art by Stefano Zuffi

Simple, rhyming text invites the reader to count from one to twelve and more, while illustrations introduce works of art by such masters as Gainsborough, Van Gogh, and Matisse.

Fun with Math: Counting by Douglas Bender

Counting is fun! Full-page photographs, simple sentences, and relevant sight words assist early learners with the concept of counting, while also building confidence in reading skills. This book also includes a page for caregivers and teachers that suggests guiding questions to help aid in reading comprehension.

Counting by Joanna Brundle

Counting is an important beginning math skill for early learners to master. Through simple, clear text, they are introduced to this basic concept and given the tools they need to practice it. Colorful photographs of things young readers are familiar with help them see how this essential skill can be applied in the world around them. Beginning readers will enjoy exploring this counting lesson on their own or with the help of an adult.