According to the Grade 1 Common Core State Standards, math instruction should focus on four critical areas, one of which is developing understanding of whole number relationships and place value, including grouping in tens and ones. Getting there doesn’t happen by accident: it starts with building a solid understanding of 2-digit numbers (which is the 1.NBT.B cluster) together with the ability to use place value understanding and properties of operations to add and subtract (1.NBT.C cluster). It’s an extremely important goal (and not the easiest one) as fluency with multi-digit numbers will build upon this knowledge.

Some time ago, we released our Numeration 21-100 topic, which is aligned with goals of the 1.NBT.B cluster. It is a sequence of 22 exercises covering how 2-digit numbers are composed, how to compare them, place value, and round numbers. These skills prepare students to successfully begin adding and subtracting 2-digit numbers, which is what our latest topic, Plus & Minus 1-100 (part 1) designed for.

In this post, we’ll walk you through the sequence of 16 exercises that comprise Plus & Minus 1-100 (part 1) to give you an in-depth view of the learning behind it…

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Your students loved Strings and Beads puzzles, now keep them thinking with Shapes and Figures! Stretch your students’ understanding of math and logic with this FREE 12-page download!
Enjoy Shapes and Figures with your students today! ☺

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(This is a guest post from our friend Brandi, an elementary teacher who will share a fun classroom activity for promoting awareness of large numbers.) A Guessing Jar is one of my favorite activities for promoting number sense and an awareness of how large a number is. I love that it can be filled with anything small or large and right away we have a number activity that is unique every time. n order to allow everyone a chance to bring in something for the jar, I have each student bring in an item for the jar during their birthday week. Candy is always a favorite but it’s up to each child. I have had everything from candy to cotton balls to Legos. The first thing my students do is make their individual estimates. At the beginning of the year their guesses fall into a wide range of way too small to way too large, but by mid-year or end of the year the guesses are becoming more and more accurate.

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Difficulty in reading can spill over into other subjects, affecting student performance. Our mission is to make math accessible and enjoyable for all students, while helping teachers run effective, independent centers. For some time now, Happy Numbers has been working to add auditory directions to our online math exercises. This new sound feature allows students to click on the directions within any exercise to hear them read aloud. Now, your primary students can strengthen their math skills without being hindered by reading ability!

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Happy Numbers is bringing a breath of fresh air to your math instruction with unique spatial thinking puzzles! Get your students thinking outside of the box with this FREE 9-page download.

Challenge your students with exercises that:

– Promote spatial/logical thinking
– Engage gifted students and early finishers
– Make a great low-prep independent center

We hope Strings of Beads will brighten your week ☺

Happy spring teaching!

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Every year when I start things rolling in my third grade classroom, I am amazed at the levels of abilities of my students. There are always a handful of students who, for whatever reason, are lacking number sense in big ways. This handful of students typically struggles with making combinations to 10. So I do what any teacher would do best, I re-teach, and re-teach, and re-teach. I always start with a concrete approach first. For example …

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How can you help your primary students make the leap from working with small numbers to becoming fluent with larger ones? One way they can start thinking in larger ‘chunks’ is by counting by tens. More than just an oral exercise, counting by tens is an essential skill that builds number sense, encourages thinking about number structures, and economizes counting and operations. Students with a strong conceptual understanding of round numbers, a ‘ten’, and ‘the tens place’ are better prepared to work with two-digit numbers and beyond. In this post, we will share the ideas behind our exercises in the topic Counting by Tens and some additional tips on reinforcing counting skills using Unifix cubes…

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