Cardinal Numbers explained in Simple Language with Examples

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What are Cardinal Numbers?

In this blog, we try and explain the concept of cardinal numbers in a simple manner, devoid of the technical language that usually accompanies such articles. While the concept remains the same in any language, the examples, charts and posters contain English numbers.

Cardinal Numbers represent ‘Quantity’.

Cardinal numbers: Illustrative Example 1: 7 mangoes in a basket

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Cardinal numbers: Illustrative Example 2: 5 Balloons

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Cardinal numbers are relatively more commonly used than Ordinal numbers, in our day to day language. Unlike Cardinal number which represents Quantity, Ordinal numbers represent Position.

Definition: Cardinal numbers (or cardinals)

These are numbers that say how many of something there are, for example, one, two, three, four, five, six. They are sometimes called counting numbers.

Source: Wikipedia: Cardinal Numbers 

So what are Ordinal Numbers and how are they different from Cardinal Numbers?

Cardinal Numbers represent quantity, unlike ordinal numbers that represent position. Quantity, as in, ‘five mangoes in a bag’. To know more about the differences between cardinal and ordinal numbers or if as a parent you wish to know which numbers should you start teaching your child with, please read this article.

If you wish to read up more about Ordinal Numbers please click here.

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Fun Trivia:

The rhyme, Baba Black Sheep, introduces the concept of cardinal numbers in an awesome way. This rhyme also helps develop the arithmetic sense among children, especially ‘quantity’. It should be noted that for most children under 30 months, the concept of number 3 (three) is quite difficult to grasp. Toddlers usually understand 1, 2 and anything greater than 2 is considered by them as many.

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Cardinal Numbers in English (1 – 20) Chart (Poster). Please feel free to download and/or take a print.

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Click here to download high-quality printable 1 to 20 Cardinal Numbers English Chart (Poster) in pdf format.

Cardinal vs Ordinal Comparison (1 – 20) English Chart (Poster). Please feel free to download and/or take a print.

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Click here to download high-quality printable 1 to 20 Cardinal vs Ordinal English Comparison Chart (Poster) in pdf format

Click here to download 15 Cardinal Numbers English worksheets

Click here to download 17 Ordinal Numbers English worksheets

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