Freebie for Composing and Decomposing Numbers - Math Coach's Corner

composing and decomposing numbers

My firsties are working on composing and decomposing numbers, specifically the number 5, and today we played a tried and true game, Under a Rock.

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I had teddy bear counters to use, and I decided right then and there that In the Cave would be a lot more fun than Under a Rock. We used the Under a Rock recording sheet and adapted it, but I came right home, found some cute bear clipart, and In the Cave was born!

Here’s the lowdown. Partners work together on a target number. That’s where the differentiation comes in. One pair of students can be working on combinations for 5, while another pair is working on 8 or 10. The students will need an amount of bears equal to their target number. For example, if students are working on the number 5, they use 5 bears. One partner closes his eyes while the other partner puts some of the bears “in the cave”. The other partner then opens his eyes and has to tell how many bears are hidden. I make the kiddos say the equation so they are practicing their combinations out loud.

Two bears outside the cave.  Three bears inside the cave.  2 plus 3 equals 5.

Ready to play?  Grab the recording sheet here.

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