The Rainbow Fish Book


Help children understand the concept of sharing, addition and subtraction by using the book ‘The Rainbow Fish’ by Marcus Pfister

Time needed:

  • 45 minutes

Age of students:

  • 8-10 years old

Group Size:

  • According to the size of the class

Materials needed:

  • The Rainbow fish Book
  • Templates of the fish in A3 size
  • Templates of smaller fish
  • bits of various coloured tissue paper or construction paper
  • small amount of tinfoil
  • one big blue piece of tissue or construction paper OR a blue marker or crayon
  • glue
  • scissors

Description of the tool:

The teacher would have read the story to the class and they would have already done several activities which highlight friendship, empathy and sharing.

Remind children of the story about the Rainbow fish, asking them questions about it. 

This book contains some important messages about friendship and sharing.
By the end of the story the Rainbow Fish has learnt that being kind and sharing his beautiful scales allows him to make friends. It makes both
Rainbow Fish and the other fish happy to share.
The rainbow fish learns to share by giving the scales to his friends.

Tell the children that we are going to understand the word share in maths.

  • Divide the class in groups and give each group an outline of a fish.
    Give them different coloured papers and instruct them to cut them in circles and
    put them on it.
  • Tell them not to stick them. This is their rainbow fish.
  • Ask them to count how many scales there are on the rainbow fish. (For now, they should have even numbers.)
  • Give them templates of small fish and as a group they are to divide the scales equally from the rainbow fish onto the
    smaller fish.
  • Each group discusses how many fish they have and how they shared the Rainbow

Each child has cutouts of 2 small fish and manipulatives like water bottle caps.
Give the children different scenarios for example:

Count 10 caps and share them between 2 fishes.
How much does each get?
Count 6 caps and share them between the 2 fishes. How much does each get?

Ask the children to write an exit note and stick it on the board. Today I have learnt ___________