Irish Luck – St. Patrick’s Day Counting Game

I invented this game for our St. Patrick’s Day Party.  I wanted something that would appeal to all kids (preschool to 2nd grade) and is easy to setup as well as simple to explain to a bunch of excited kids.  I generally like to play dice games with little kids because not only are they fun, but kids get to practice numbers and counting.  This St. Patrick’s Day Counting Game is no exception.  The excitement of this game comes from unpredictability.  The lucky coin can be discovered immediately or take forever (especially, if you are putting the coins back after each turn instead of keeping them).   


Practice Numbers and Counting with this simple St. Patrick's Day Counting Game we call Irish Luck


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What you need

3 shamrocks

one die

gold coins

a sticker



  • Players take turns throwing a die and picking a corresponding number of coins.  The first child to get the lucky coin wins the game. 
  • Take this game up a notch, and turn it into a memory game.  Each time a player looks at the back of the coin and discovers that it’s not a lucky coin, he needs to put it back.  Now the players have to remember, which coins were already checked before they make their move.  


How to play 

St. Patrick’s Day Counting Game


  1.  Cut 3 (or any other quantity) shamrock leaves.  You can print my pattern here.  You can either print shamrock shapes on green paper or print one copy on regular printing paper to use as a template.  You can play this game any time of the year by replacing shamrocks with eggs, flowers or spiders.  


Irish Luck St. Patrick's Day Counting Game to practice early math skill


2.  Put a sticker on one of the coins to designate it as a Lucky Coin.


Irish Luck St. Patrick's Day Counting Game to practice numbers and counting


3.  Place the coins on top of leaves in any fashion.  The more players the more leaves and coins you might want to use in the game.  On the same note, I discovered that my 5 year old was happy to play this game by herself for what seemed like hours. 


Irish Luck St. Patrick's Day Counting Game


4.  The first player throws a die, counts out the number of dots on a die and then counts out the corresponding number of coins. Don’t forget to check the back of each coin to see, if it’s a lucky coin.  The first child to get the lucky coin wins.  In our game the winner gets a small trinket from the dollar store.  

Advanced Level:

Instead of keeping the coins, each player places them back after checking for the lucky sticker.  Now players need to remember what coins were already flipped before proceeding with their picks.  


  • Add paper and pencil for keeping score.  
  • Use two dice for addition practice.  


Do you have any favorite dice games?  


If you are still looking for some St. Patrick’s Day decor ideas, check out our Melted crayons Shamrock Leaves

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