Number sense regarding decimals usually starts with fourth grade and continues with more complex operations involving decimals in fifth grade and beyond. It is this extension of the place value system and then relating them to fractions and percentages that often perplex our students (and the teachers, too)! Read ahead to get your freebies (Decimal practice notes, anchor charts, and Discovering Decimals Number of the Day / Game activity). I have revised this previous post and included some more freebies below.
Students must understand this base-ten value system extends in both directions — between any two values the 10-to-1 ratio remains the same. When using place value blocks in primary grades, students recognize the 100 square as 100, the tens strip as 10, and the units cube as 1. Then with decimals, we ask them to reverse their thinking as the 100 square represents 1 whole, the tens strip represents a tenth, and the unit cube represents a hundredth. This may take repeated practice to make the shift in thinking — but don’t leave it out. Remember the progression from concrete (hands-on) to pictorial to abstract is heavily grounded in research. Students will likely gain better understanding of decimals by beginning with concrete and pictorial representations.
I am sharing my decimal practice notes, which highlight some of the basic concepts to consider when teaching. Pronouncing the names for the decimals is not in these notes, but be sure to emphasize correct pronunciation — .34 is not “point three four.” It is “thirty-four hundredths.” Use the word and for the decimal point when combining with a whole number. Example: 25.34 is pronounced “Twenty-five and thirty-four hundredths.” I know as adults we often use the term “point,” but we need to model correct academic language when teaching. You can get also the pdf version of these notes by clicking here: Decimal practice teaching notes.
Anchor charts are excellent ways to highlight strategies in pictorial form. Here are some examples of anchor charts to help students relate decimals to fractions, location on a number line, word form, and equivalencies. Get the free pdf version here: Discovering decimals anchor charts. It includes a blank form to create your own.
In this model, I chose the 1000 cube to model 356 thousandths. It’s a little tricky – be sure to see that the 300 part is shaded all the way (front and top – picture 3 slices of 100), the 50 part is shaded (front and half the top – picture half of a 100 slice), and the 6 part is just shaded in the front (picture 6 individual parts). The entire cube would represent 1 whole.
Here’s a matching activity / game in which students match decimal to fraction, word form, expanded form, money, and pictorial form. Included is a blank page so you can make your own or have students take notes. Click here for the FREE activity: Decimal, Fraction, & Money Match
Another resource ($2.50 at TPT from Joanne Miller) to help students relate the decimal to the pictorial form:Decimal 100 grid Scoot
Finally, below is an activity to practice or reinforce decimal concepts. The page showing can be used as a “Number of the Day” practice. I also created a game using this model, and the whole packet is included in this free pdf. Click here: Discovering Decimals number of the day and game
For more teaching help (videos and interactive models) for decimals, check out the following 3 free resources. These are also listed in my resources section of the blog (top black bar):
As always, you are welcome to share your decimal discovery ideas. Just click the comment box speech bubble at the top of the article or the comment box at the end of the article.
]]>I have recently revised a great resource titled: Eight Critical Attributes of Teaching a Comprehension Lesson. I do not know the original author, so I can’t give her/him credit. I did made some modifications to the original and provided some examples of how to apply it (with fact/opinion and cause/effect skills). See the link below for the full 3 page document.
Click here for the document: Eight Critical Attributes of Teaching a Comprehension Lesson It is a 3 page document which highlights a ME, WE, TWO, YOU scaffolded gradual release model. Page 1 is shown above. Pages 2 and 3 give actual ways to implement these regarding two important comprehension skills. The stories mentioned were taken from Journeys 2nd grade. The Jellyfish story (fact/opinion) is from Lesson 10. The Super Storms story (cause/effect) is from Lesson 8.
When focusing on comprehension, I have a few other general tips to pass along – especially for grades 1-3:
Graphic organizers play an important role to help students “visualize” the text structure and train the brain to think of how details are organized. Click here for my previous Blog post on Graphic Organizers
Enjoy your Thanksgiving Holiday! I’ll be back in a couple of weeks.
]]>
What is the purpose of having literacy work stations in your classroom? If you answered, “To provide meaningful, engaging, rigorous, differentiated opportunities for students to learn” then you are on the right track!! Aside from the task of deciding on the literacy station procedures and routines you want for your classroom is the problem of actually providing and organizing those quality activities.
I know most of you regularly visit the TPT store and Pinterest for ideas. There are a TON of great things out there. However, not everyone has a color printer or has the means to drain their bank account to pay for these items.
So, here is a FREE resource I think you will like. It does not require a color printer, and it addresses pretty much every literacy skill you need to teach and/or provide practice for (KG-5th grade). It is the Florida Center for Reading Research (www.fcrr.org). Click on this link: Student center activities which takes you directly to the K-5 reading center activities page. The following are available — all for FREE!!
These are some of the types of activities:
A teacher’s guide is also available with more detailed directions, background information, and literacy station organizational ideas.
I also bookmarked this site in my Resources section (top of the blog in the black band) should you need to refer to this site often. Enjoy!!! Let us know about your favorite FCRR activity or how you are using them in your classroom! Just click on the comment speech bubble.
]]>If you teach 3rd and above, I am positive you have students who have not memorized their multiplication facts. So what do they do to try to get the answer? From my experience, most students seem to know that repeated addition, drawing equal groups or arrays, and skip counting are strategies to try. I do believe those are very helpful for students to conceptualize what multiplication is all about. But here is what is frustrating:
Let’s say the problem is 6 x 7:
With all of these strategies, students can get the correct answer, but they are often not really even using multiplication. Their method is often counting the objects in each group one at a time. And when skip counting, if just one number is missed in the sequence then the total is obviously off. In addition, students often spend so much time with each of these that they get frustrated and give up.
In previous posts, I mentioned different ways for students to skip count while focusing on the patterns numbers make (Click HERE) and ways to use arrays to break it down into smaller equal groups (Click HERE). So those methods are a little more productive toward using multiplication than the above. Today, though, I will steer you toward a unique strategy which does the following:
The strategy modeled here is based on facts students already know. This is likely to be different among your students. Some will say they are great with their 4s or 3s. But most students I work with are proficient with their 5s and 2s (and can skip count quickly and accurately if they haven’t memorized these). So a lot of the problems shown will focus on use of 5s and/or 2s.
Again, let’s look at 6 x 7. The student doesn’t know their 6’s and doesn’t know their 7’s. So we will decompose 6 or 7 to include a group of 5’s, which is known (I’ll show both ways).
To see 7 decomposed instead of 6: Seven is made up of a group of 5 and a group of 2.
Click on this link Multiplication Strategy pictorial CE for a FREE copy of the pictures above and below which are used in this post (for easy reference later). Here are a few more examples. Some use 5s and 2s, while others will show other combinations using 3s or 4s. The use of dots instead of numbers inside the “domino” is suggested to keep it a little more pictorial and less abstract. Plus, it builds on knowledge of subitizing (which is recognizing quantity without physically counting). Numbers alone can certainly be used, but the quantity of numbers might frustrate some students.
Practice activity:
Have a great week!
C. Elkins, OK Math and Reading Lady
]]>This post contains some of my favorite sight word activities and resources to help your students practice those sight words and high frequency words. If you haven’t read part 1, be sure to do that as it contains information about research based teaching strategies. Here goes!!
Notice all of these methods, the students need to read and/or recognize the word (and perhaps use it in a sentence). Have FUN!!!
]]>Sight words are those which students can identify automatically without the need to decode. They often do not follow phonics “rules.” Examples: who, all, you, of. They may include some high frequency words (HFW). High frequency words are those which occur most often in reading and writing. By learning 100 of the HFW, a beginning reader can access about 50% of text. According to Fry, these 13 words account for 25% of words in print: a, and, for, he, is, in, it, of, that, the, to, was, you.
When are students ready to learn sight words? According to the experts from Words Their Way (Bear, Invernizzi, Templeton), student need to have a more fully developed concept of word. Concept of Word is the ability to track a memorized text without getting off track, even on a 2-syllable word. In other words, does the child have a one-to-one correspondence with words? When tracking, does their finger stay under a 2-syllable word until it is finished, or are they moving from word-to-word based on the syllable sounds they hear? In the sentence shown, does a student move their finger to the next word after saying ap- or do they stay on the whole word apple before moving on? Students in the early Letter-Name Stage (ages 4-6) start to understand this concept. It becomes more fully developed mid to later stages of Letter Names (ages 5-8).
Students with a basic concept of word are able to acquire a few words from familiar stories and text they have “read” several times or memorized. Students with a full concept of word can finger point read accurately and can correct themselves if they get off track. They can find words in text. Therefore, many sight words are acquired after several rereadings of familiar text.
Instructional Strategies KG-2nd Grade
1. To help children gain concept of word:
2. Explicit Instruction: Dedicated time each day for sight word work
3. Flash Card Practice (Research based method) with no more than 10 words:
4. Word Wall Suggestions:
What are your thoughts on sight word? We would love to hear success stories from you!
P.S. This was a revised article on sight words from one I published 2017 (just in case some of it looked familiar).
Next week: More sight word activities you can use in the classroom!
]]>
Yes, you can even use ten frames to teach multiplication concepts! Here are my mini ten-frames with dot cards from 1 – 10: Click HERE to get a free copy. These are helpful to use, especially if you don’t have enough tens/ones blocks . . . or you prefer manipulatives that are slightly easier to manage. These provide a strong connection to place value, and the commutiative and distributive properties.
I recommend two sets of the cards 1-9 per student. Each set has multiple copies of the same number. They can be laminated, cut, and placed in a baggie for ease in handing out and storage.
Multiplication Examples:
]]>
Welcome back to Part 3 of my Ten Frame series. This will continue with some more ideas on using ten frames for addition and place value. Be sure to grab my free set of mini ten frame dot cards and Place value mat with ten frames to use with these activities.
Add 9:
How often do you see students counting their fingers, drawing tally marks, or other figures to add 9? But what if they could visualize and conceptualize adding 9 is almost like adding ten, but one less? This is where the ten frame comes in handy.
Subtract 9:
Use of the ten frame provides a concrete method (moving counters around) and then easily moves to a pictorial method (pictures of dot cards). These experiences allow students to better process the abstract (numbers only) problems they will encounter.
Place Value Concepts:
Variation of using base ten blocks with this place value mat:
*Even without the use of this mat with printed ten-frame, I insist students show some type of organized placement of units cubes any time they are being used for some type of counting. Students can be creative with patterns that resemble domino or dice dots, ten frame configurations, equal rows, etc. Try it!!!
Adding or Subtracting 2 digit numbers:
Counting coins:
Check out this free resource from one of my favorite math specialists (Math Coachs Corner):
Coin identification and value activity with ten frames
Have a great week! Let us know how using ten frames has helped your students!
]]>
Last week’s focus was on using ten frames to help with students’ number sense and conceptual development of number bonds for amounts 1-10. This post will feature ways to use ten frames to enhance students’ understanding of addition and subtraction. Look for freebies and a video!
There are many addition and subtraction strategies to help students memorize the basic facts such as these below. The ten frame is a very good tool for students of all grade levels to make these strategies more concrete and visual. I will focus on some of these today.
Doubles and near doubles (doubles +1, -1, +2, or -2): If the doubles are memorized, then problems near doubles can be solved strategically.
Facts of 10: These are important to grasp for higher level addition / subtraction problems as well as rounding concepts.
Make a Ten: This strategy builds on the above (facts of 10) to help with problems with sums between 10 and 20. Students should readily be able to solve a problem such as 10 + 4 mentally first.
Continued practice with these strategies:
Share your experiences with ten frames!
]]>The focus in this post will be an introduction to ten frames and ways they can help your students gain number sense. Then stay tuned because ten frames can also be a great tool for addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division.
Subitizing: This is the ability to recognize an amount without physically counting. Looking at the picture of red counters: If the top row is full, does the student automatically know there are 5? Doing a Number Talk is a great way to practice subitizing using a ten frame:
The idea is to keep building on this.
Here are some resources you might like to help with subitizing using ten frames.
Number Bonds: Using ten frames to illustrate number bonds assists students with composing and decomposing numbers. Students then see that a number can be more than a counted amount or a digit on a jersey or phone number. Here is an example of number bonds for 6:
Teaching strategies for number bonds using ten frames:
Learning station ideas for subitizing and number bonds with ten frames:
Tell us how you use ten frames to build number sense!! Or if you try doing any of the above, what were the results?
Have a great week!
]]>