ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Free Printable Matching Games for Preschoolers

Updated on June 18, 2014

The Benefits of Matching Games for Preschoolers

Playing matching games with preschoolers is a great way for them to have fun whilst learning. There are several matching games that you can enjoy playing with your child, most of which involve identifying and matching two identical items. Playing matching games like matching pairs, snap and matching flash cards have huge educational benefits. Not only can they help to improve your child's memory, but they can also be used as tools to learn numbers, colours and letters.

Here are some free printable matching games that you can use with your child.

Bugs Matching Game

Instructions for making a matching pairs game using the free printable games on this page.


  1. Right click on the matching pairs game that you want to print out and save the image to your computer.
  2. Print out 2 copies of the game.
  3. Laminate both copies or stick them on to card. Cut out the 9 pictures on each copy.

Cute Animals Matching Game

Once you have printed out your free matching game, you can use it to play matching pairs, flash card pairs and snap. Here are instructions for playing these games.

Matching Pairs

Shuffle the cards and place them face down in rows.

  1. Take turns to flip over two cards. If they're a pair you get keep them. If not, place them face down again in the same position.
  2. Continue with the game until all of the pairs have been found. The winner is the player with the most pairs.

Make sure that the cards are set out in rows and with ample space between the cards. This will make it easier for young children to remember where each card is.

Colour / Shapes Matching Game

This matching pairs game will help your child learn to identify shapes and colours.
This matching pairs game will help your child learn to identify shapes and colours.

Flash Card Pairs (age 2-3 years)

  1. Separate the cards into two sets. Both sets should contain one of each picture.
  2. Spread one set of cards out with the pictures facing up.
  3. Shuffle the other set of cards and place in a pile facing down.
  4. Take turns to flip over the top card from the pile. The player then has to find the matching card as quickly as possible from the ones that are spread out.

Flash Card Pairs ( age 3+ )

  1. Follow steps 1-3 as above.
  2. Each player takes a card from the pile. Use a stopwatch - most mobile phones have one - to see who can find their picture in the fastest time. The player with the fastest time gets to keep the card. The other players put their cards aside.
  3. The winner is the player with the most cards.

Tip: You can also make this game more challenging by assigning more than one card at a time to each player. For instance, each player could have 3 cards that they have to find in the fastest time. You can also use a timer, and ask your child to find the cards before the buzzer goes off.

Alien Matching Game


  1. Shuffle the cards well and deal them out equally between players. Players keep their stack of cards face down.
  2. The youngest player starts first by taking the top card from their stack and placing it face up in the middle of the table.
  3. Moving clockwise, players then take turns to place their top card on the middle pile.
  4. This continues until a pair of cards is spotted by player. The player should then shout snap and put her hand quickly on the top of the cards. This player then gets to keep all of the cards on the pile.
  5. The winner is the player that ends up with all of the cards.

Tip: To increase the likelihood of a 'snap' happening, print out more than 2 copies of your preferred matching pairs game to play snap. You can also make the game more challenging by using two or more of the matching games. Older players will enjoy using more cards to play snap as this will make the game last a lot longer.

Use Your Imagination

Use your imagination to think up some of your own games to play with these free printable matching games. Or better still, let your child come up with different variations as there is nothing kids like better than doing things their own way!


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Maggie.L profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from UK

      Hi Melissa, thanks for your kind comments. I hope that your colleagues find them useful.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      These games are great! I wish I'd had them when I was teaching my preschool class, but I'll forward them on to my colleagues who still work at the school.

    • Maggie.L profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from UK

      Hi Writer Fox, Many thanks for your feedback and vote. That's much appreciated.

    • Maggie.L profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from UK

      DDE thanks for reading and commenting. Glad you find this hub helpful.

    • Writer Fox profile image

      Writer Fox 

      4 years ago from the wadi near the little river

      Wonderful games for preschoolers! I loved your easy-to-follow directions. Voted up!

    • DDE profile image

      Devika Primić 

      4 years ago from Dubrovnik, Croatia

      Preschoolers require daily activities to stay active. Their minds need excitement and learning opportunities a very helpful hub indeed.

    • Maggie.L profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from UK

      Hi sadstill22. Glad to hear that. Kids love playing matching games and learn so much from playing them.

    • sadstill22 profile image


      4 years ago from Singapore

      my kids love this


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)