jump. hop. count. {a number playmat}

Hello! I'm LeAnne from Everyday Celebrations. This is my first recipe here at the Moda Bake Shop. I am thrilled to be a part of the wonderful contributors and hope you enjoy this fun project!  Please drop by my blog and say hi. You can also find more fun items and patterns in my Etsy shop.


I made the Number Playmat with the young preschooler in mind. Little preschoolers are filled with excitement as they begin to learn the basics. This mat can be used as a fun and interactive aid in teaching numbers and numerical representation. This colorful Number Playmat has many uses:
  • Toss the bean bag to the square with the matching number.
  • Toss a bean bag on 'jump' or 'hop' and jump or hop that many times. 
  • Toss two bean bags on two squares. Add or subtract the two numbers.
  • Pick a number. Find a representation of that number in the room and place it on the square. Repeat for all the numbers. Example: Find two blocks and place on the 2 square. 
  • Write number words on index cards and place on the appropriate square. Also place a representation on the square. 

    1 Punctuation Layer Cake by American Jane
    1 yard for backing
    1 yard for binding and optional drawstring bag - find the drawstring bag tutorial here
    (if not making bag, 1/2 yard is enough for the binding) 
    numbers and words templates - (included in printer friendly version at bottom of post)
    **Note there is not a 9 in the file because you can flip the 6 and have a 9.**
    1 yard iron-on adhesive, such as Heat n' Bond
    beans to fill bean bags

    1/2 yard of flannel for bean bags, optional see step 19
    1 1/2 yards ribbon or cording, for the optional bag

    ***All seam allowances are 1/4" unless otherwise noted. ***

    'Slice' into that yummy layer cake and decide which squares you will use for what.
    • playmat  - 12 squares
    • numbers/words -  4 - 7 squares (I used less 'busy' prints to help the numbers standout.)
    • bean bags - 5 squares
    • rock pockets, optional - 1 square (I added 'rock pockets' in case I use my playmat outside.)
    Two quilt blocks make up this playmat:
    Block A - you will make 4 of these, corner pieces
    Block B - you will make 6 of these, middle pieces
    Center Squares - two layer cake squares that will remain whole

    1. For block A: Select four squares.
    2. For block B: Select three sets of two squares. (They are stacked on top of one another.)
    3. Center Blocks: Select two squares. These will remain whole.
    Cutting Block A
    4. Stack the four squares for block A together. Cut 3" from one side. 
    5.  From the 3" x 10" piece just cut, cut 1/2" from one of the short ends.
    6. From the main piece that remains, cut 3" from the 7" side.  You will have three sizes for block A:
    • 3" x 9 1/2"
    • 3" x 7"
    • 7" square
    Cutting Block B
    7. Stack the six squares for block B together.  Cut  3" from one side.
    Piecing Block A
     8. To make each block, pick one 3" x 7" piece, one 3" x 9 1/2" piece, and one 7" square. With right sides together, sew the  3" x 7" piece to the left side of the 7" square.  Press seams open. Repeat for the other A blocks.
    9. For this step, keep the block in the position shown above. For two of the blocks, sew one 3" x 9 1/2" piece to the top of the block. For the other two blocks, sew the one 3" x 9 1/2" piece to the bottom. Again, sew with right sides together and press seams open.
    Piecing Block B
    10. To make each block, pick one 3" x 10" piece and one 7" x 10" piece. (I just swapped pieces between the two squares I initially matched up.) Place pieces right sides together, matching up the 10" sides. Sew and press seams open. 
    11. Decide on the placement of the squares. Refer to the picture below for placement of the blocks. 
    12. Sew the blocks right sides together so you have three rows. Then sew the rows together to form the playmat top.
    13. Trace the numbers and letters on to iron-on adhesive and adhere to desired fabric squares. **Note there is not a 9 in the file because you can flip the six and have a nine.** Follow the directions for cutting and adhering as indicated on the package for your brand of iron-on adhesive. Then adhere the numbers and letters to the playmat. I put my numbers on in a clockwise fashion with the words in the middle. You can also trace and cut out the numbers for the bean bags at this time.
    14. Blanket-stitch or zig-zag around the numbers and words to reinforce the adhesive. (I used a machine blanket stitch.) Make a 'quilt sandwich' and quilt or tie as desired. I have to admit, this was the first 'quilt' I ever machine quilted using my own sewing machine. I loved the result although it isn't perfect. However, it was the perfect sized project for a beginner machine quilter. I just quilted around my numbers and words, it wasn't a problem.
    15. Optional: After quilting but before binding, add the rock pockets. Take one square and cut into four 5" squares. Fold each 5" square diagonally and press.
    16. Pin one pocket in each corner with the folded edge facing out. Baste the pockets in place about 1/8" from the edge.
    17. Bind the playmat as desired.
    {bean bags}
    18. Select 5 squares from the Layer Cake. Stack the squares together and cut into 5" squares. You will have (20) 5" squares in all. On 10 of the squares adhere the number in the center of the square.
    19. Optional: I found adding a layer of flannel to the bean bags made them a bit sturdier.  Cut (20)
    4 1/2" squares from flannel.  (I cut my 4 1/2" squares from some leftover flannel from a previous project.) To make this quick cut two or three 4 1/2" strips from flannel, stack, and then cut into 4 1/2" squares. 
    20. Blanket stitch or zig-zag around each number to reinforce the adhesive. I HIGHLY recommend doing this since the bean bags will be handled and tossed. Zig-zag stitching around each number doesn't take very long. (To tell the difference between the 6 and 9 I stitched a line of red zig-zag stitching below the six at this point.)
    21. Place two 5" squares for one bean bag right side down. (One square should have a number, one shouldn't.)  Center one  4 1/2" flannel square on each 5" square.
    22. Flip one square over so wrong sides are now together. Line up all the layers of fabric. Pin each corner.
    23. Sew the bean bags together using 1/2" seam allowance. Leave an opening at the top. Fill the bean bag about 1/2 way with beans.
    24. Machine stitch opening close and secure by back stitching. Pink the raw edges with pinking shears.

    Get ready to learn with your little one in a fun and interactive way!

    27.5" x 37" Number Playmat 
    10 or more bean bags
    drawstring storage bag, tutorial found here

    LeAnne Ballard


    Tiffany said...

    So adorable! I love it!

    Melanie said...

    love it!

    РоМашкА said...

    So adorable!!!

    Sherry said...

    Such a cute project! Thanks for sharing.

    Wilma NC said...

    That is the cutest thing I have seen in a while. I'm making 2 of those for my grandkids.

    Hooptee said...

    This is so adorable! I can't wait to make this!

    traceyjay said...

    very, very cute.:) Wonderful project.

    Jeanne said...

    Very nice! Love it!

    Karen said...

    Thank you for a wonderful tutorial. Can't wait to make it for my two year old.

    Carla Smith said...

    This is such a cute project.think I will be making one this week

    Kim and Jim said...

    This is perfect!! I was planning on making bean bags for my little one's upcoming birthday- this little playmat will be such a fun addition & came at the perfect time for me. Your tutorial is excellent as well- thanks for posting it!

    Tabitha said...

    this is super cute!

    tumbleweedsandtwisters said...

    What a great learning game!

    Beth said...

    This is THE BEST idea! I've got three granddaughters, two under the age of 5 and a great neice/nephew (twins) that are two. I'm going to whip a couple of these mats up for them as a gift for Christmas. This is a "toy" that really will keep them entertained and educate at the same time. Thank so much!

    Molly @ The Creative Maven said...

    I love this idea! Sometimes it's hard to find cool things to do with "boy" wovens - this would be a good one!

    HoopDeeDoo said...

    What a wonderful project!! I think this would be a fabulous Christmas gift!

    NaomiG said...

    What a great project! This would make wonderful shower and christmas gifts... I love it! Thank you!

    ssuch said...

    I want to make this for my classroom only I will change hop to add and jump to subtract. We can use this for math party days. It will be another fun way to practice math facts. The children will love it! And I'll make one for my grandbaby too! Thank you!

    Farmgirl Susan said...

    I love this! What a wonderful project. :)

    That's such a neat idea. And I love that you have math party days! :)

    DeAnna said...

    I made this quilt yesterday. It was my first ever quilt! I am so excited and thrilled with the ease of the instructions. I wish all quilts were this easy! Thank you for making it so simple for me to make. It is going to be a Christmas present for my niece and I can't wait to give it to her! Thanks!!

    Katie said...

    LOVE this!

    LeAnne said...

    @ DeAnna

    I am so glad you made the project! I also am glad it was easy to follow. Thanks for all your comments. :)

    MaryJo said...

    This is one of the cutest things I've seen in my blog searches! I would love to make this for my grandchildren! Thank you for the tutorial! I just love this!

    Chera said...

    I love it and also my daughter wanna have one. It's really good tutorial.

    Mary said...

    Can you help? The numbers and words templates pages are blank