Home Activity

Cat in the Hat: Thinga-ma-jigger Hide-and-Seek

What's The Point

Math is much more than numbers and calculations. Math is also about language. When you talk with your child, it is important to introduce and reinforce the vocabulary of math. Vocabulary that describes an object’s location or the direction of a moving object prepares a child for learning to read a map or a graph. Position and direction vocabulary includes words and phrases such as up, down, under, over, next to, on top of, right, left, behind, and in front of.

Related Game

Beehive and Seek – Help a lost baby bee find its hive.

This Activity Will Help Your Child

  • Learn position vocabulary
  • Follow directions

Book Suggestions

  • Over, Under, and Through
    by Tana Hoban
  • The Secret Birthday Message
    by Eric Carle


How Do I Do It?

  1. Print out the picture of the Thinga-ma-jigger carrying the Cat, Sally, and Nick.
  2. Ask your child to color the picture.
  3. Glue the printout to a piece of heavy paper. Once the glue has dried, cut out the picture along the dashed lines. Now you are ready to play Thinga-ma-jigger Hide-and-seek!
  4. Tell your child that the Thinga-ma-jigger will “fly” around the back yard (or the house or a nearby park) and land in different places.
  5. Ask your child to close his eyes while the Thinga-ma-jiger flies to its first landing spot. Place the Thinga-ma-jigger on a bush, in a tree, on a piece of lawn furniture, or on the ground next to one of these objects.
  6. Lead your child to the Thinga-ma-jigger’s location by giving him verbal clues such as: “It is next to a tree.” “It is between a tree and a bush.” ” It is under a chair.” “It is on top of a table.” “It is behind the bird bath.”
  7. When your child finds it, congratulate him and reinforce the vocabulary by saying, “Great job! You found the Thinga-ma-jigger under that bush!”

  8. Note: This activity can also be done by hiding a small toy or other object.

Take It Further

You can continue the fun by challenging your child to take his turn hiding the Thinga-ma-jigger and then leading you to its location with verbal clues. This will give your child an opportunity to practice the vocabulary he just learned.