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Addition Games to Build Number Sense


If you've ever worked with primary children, you've undoubtedly seen the look of frustration on your student's faces when they can't quite grasp the understanding of addition and subtraction.  Usually, the problems stem from teachers introducing abstract symbols before students have had a lot of real experiences manipulating objects to help them develop a sense of quantity, number combinations, and number relationships. "Symbols come to have meaning only when they are associated with these real experiences." Kathy Richardson  So put away the workbooks and flashcards and break out the games.  If you've used mine and Deedee's Kindergarten or First Grade Math Units you know that we are a firm believer in giving kids conceptual experiences to help them develop a deep understanding of number sense.  Here are a few ideas for things that you can do in your classroom to help your students build number sense for addition and subtraction.  

Use the “Five Little this and five little that” poems to work on addition and subtraction.  Let the kids be the manipulatives.  Use language like,  "3 and 2 is 5," so that when it comes time to introduce the symbols for addition they will already have a conceptual understanding. 

 These monster puppets are a great way to get your students involved in the math poem.

Give your students lots of opportunities to play games that require them to build two sets of objects and then count them to see how many in all. 


You can use any manipulatives that you have in your room and a set of dice to get started.  Kids love using real objects like pom poms, keys, pattern blocks, and unifix cubes. 

Abby and I teamed up to work on some games to help your students strengthen their number sense.  You can read her post here.  We just finished the second set of math games, and this set is all about Addition. There are ELEVEN games, and they are on sale for almost 40% off until Wednesday.
 Here's some of what's included:



















Thanks for visiting my blog.  I hope you are enjoying your summer!!





Teaching with Informational Texts: Close Reading Lessons for One Tiny Turtle

One Tiny Turtle was written by one of my favorite authors, Nicola Davies. 

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans

This book chronicles the life cycle of the loggerhead sea turtle.

As with most informational texts, we start by discussing our schema on the subject. We want students to think about what they already know and attach their new understandings to their prior knowledge.    Here are a few of the responses we got.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtles hatch and go to the sea and live there forever!

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtles live in the sea.    Sea turtles start out as tiny as bottle caps.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtles live in the sea.  They use their shells to hide from big things.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtle start in shells.  When they get older they live in water.  Mom turtles hide there eggs under the sand.

 After reading the text, we create an anchor chart to help support our new learning.
One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans

Students worked on their own All About Turtles books.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtles have to hurry to the ocean so they won't get eaten.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans
Sea turtles have hard shells later [when] they are older.
In addition to reading One Tiny Turtle, there are also fantastic videos.  Johnathan Bird's Blue World are always fantastic.


The lesson plans ending with a fun sea turtle life cycle activity.

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans

One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans


One Tiny Turtle Lesson Plans

I also wanted to mention that we have added an additional version of the reading skills charts AND skills rubrics to our Guiding Readers units.  If you have already purchased our units, these are FREE to you.  Just go to "My Purchases" on TpT.

Here is a peek at what they look like.






You can find the lesson plans for One Tiny Turtle HERE.
You can find the entire Guided Reading Series HERE.

Are You Ready to GET YOUR TEACH ON?


Need a teacher pick-me-up? Looking for some of the most current research based strategies that will light your classroom on fire? Join us in 2016 for Get Your Teach On – a one-of-a-kind experience for K-3 teachers.  You will spend a day with Deanna Jump, Hope King and their special guests, as they share their passion and enthusiasm for education and give you their tips, tricks, best practices, and teacher secrets to building a successful and engaging classroom. You will leave feeling empowered, motivated, and prepared to create dynamic lessons that will challenge your students and leave them hungry for more. Get Your Teach On is sure to be unlike any other educators’ conference that you will attend. Pack your favorite teacher bag, get ready for some educational magic, and join us in 2016-2017 as you prepare to Get Your Teach On!
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