Adding with a Number Line

Looking for a low-prep way to introduce number lines as an addition strategy in first grade? Keep reading for a simple, concrete way to help even your reluctant mathematicians jump onboard the addition train!

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Calendar Math



Calendar Math is one of the quickest ways to integrate student leadership, mathematical thinking, and routine in the classroom. It can foster problem solving skills, communication skills, and even leadership. All of this happens in a matter of 10-15 minutes, I kid you not!

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Introducing Attributes in Guided Math


We’re in the final countdown, folks. 39 instructional days until Summer Break and only 9 more instructional days until SPRING BREAK! It’s that time of year when first graders really start to take off!

Because we worked them so hard on double digit addition and subtraction these last few weeks, we were ready to take a break and move into a different type of thinking: geometry. In first grade, we are expected to be able to identify and describe shapes based on their attributes. What better way to introduce this than with some math disguised as some sneaky fun?!

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Double Digit Addition Strategies

This year, my school has decided to put a huge emphasis on what it means to have “number sense” in the primary grades. In order for this to happen, we had to put an emphasis on a few key questions:

  • What does it mean to be fluent?
  • How do we assess number sense?
  • What are the “wish list” strategies that we want kids to come in with at each grade level?

No, we don’t have the answers to all of these yet, but we do have a strong(er) grasp on what we DON’T want to do with our kids.

In first grade – we did NOT want to teach them algorithms that were only going to hinder their understanding as they progressed through the grades. So, as one of my teammates said, “We don’t stack, we go flat!”

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