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Developing Automaticity with Basic Math Facts

The standards, whether the CCSSM or the TEKS in Texas, definitively state that students should develop fluency with calculations, and that means automaticity with basic facts. Knowing math facts is similar to knowing sight words–it frees up the mind to...

Math Activities That Do Double Duty

One criticism I hear again and again is that there are too many standards to “cover”. I agree that if you just look at the volume of standards for each grade level, they do seem quite overwhelming. But the thing about math is that so many skills are...

Subitizing: Moving from Perceptual to Conceptual

Subitizing, a funny-sounding word, but a very important skill for developing number sense. Basically, we subitize when we instantly recognize a small group of objects as a number. For example, if I hold up five fingers and you instantly know it’s five without...

Exploring Equality and Composing Numbers

I’ve been working with my Firsties on the following TEK: 1.2(A) recognize instantly the quantity of structured arrangements Although it is not mentioned in the TEK, the mathematical word for this skill is subitizing. The dot patterns on dice and dominoes are...

Subitizing: Instantly Recognizing Quantities

I’m currently working with my Kinders and Firsties on subitizing. If you’re scratching your head about the word “subitizing”, you might not be alone. Consider this–how many fingers are displayed in the picture above. I’m pretty sure...

Fast Five–Unleashing the Power of Ten Frames

My 1st graders and 2nd graders have been adding numbers using ten frames, and our work has led me to make some observations.  Ten frames are powerful tools for building the critical benchmarks of 5 and 10, but only if students are guided to understand and use the...