Friday, August 30, 2013


There are three other math tools that will build a foundation for the Common Core Math Standards.  Today I’ll share ideas for ten frames, tomorrow we’ll explore dot cards, and then it's rekenrek time.

Here are two good sites for downloading ten frames and dot cards.
You’ll find games children can play on these sites:

Check out these activities for using tens frames with a Smart Board:

The Georgia Department of Education has some good activities for both ten frames and dot cards:

And here are a few videos that demonstrate ten frames:

An understanding of “ten” is essential for working with larger numbers.  It helps students visualize the numbers and gives them an understanding of the relationship of numbers to ten.

Note!  Many researchers suggest starting with a five frame before presenting a ten frame.

Building Sets
Give children counters (bears, buttons, small erasers, dry snacks, seasonal objects, etc.).  Call out a number and demonstrate how to place the counters in the frame starting on the left.  Remind them to always start with the first frame on the left.
*Turn the frame vertically to make sets.
*Can you place the counters in a different way?
*Have children count forwards and backwards on their frames.

Rock and Roll
Children take one or two dice, roll them, and build that amount on their frame.

Show a numeral or dot card.  Challenge children to make the set on their frame.

Add and Remove
Have students fill up their frame with counters.  Call out a number.  Can they remove counters or add counters to build the new number?

Addition and Subtraction
Place counters for the first addend on the top row and the second addend in the bottom row.  How many altogether?
*Take away counters for subtraction problems.

Double Frames
Extend to a double ten frame for building numbers to 20.
*Use a file folder to make a single or double ten frame for each child.

Giant Ten Frame
Draw a large ten frame on the sidewalk with chalk.  Let children stand in the frames to build sets, add, subtract, etc.
*Make a giant ten frame with tape on the floor in your classroom or draw one on a shower curtain with a permanent marker.