Read on for addition fact strategies and nine no prep addition games!
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Do you remember how you learned your addition facts?
My memory is a little fuzzy when I think back (over thirty years -ago – agh!) to first grade. But I remember flash cards. And as a new teacher, that was all I knew. In fact, our math series came with a giant set of colorful punch-out flash cards – one set for each student.
Can you guess where I’m going with this? Hint: it’s not to sing the praises of flash cards.
Are flashcards a good teaching tool?
I’m not opposed to flashcards IF they’re used after kids have developed some basic understandings.
While memorization of the addition facts is the end goal, it should come with hands-on practice and engagement with facts – not drill, drill, drill.
You know how some people automatically break down numbers in their head? You give them a big number to add or subtract, and they do it quickly. My husband is one of those people.
Then there are people like me.
I try to think it out, get a fuzzy brain, and then grab paper and pencil for some old-fashioned borrowing and carrying. All those flash cards helped me memorize the basic facts, but they didn’t teach me how to manipulate numbers.
What strategies do kids need when solving addition facts?
I’m glad you asked! I’ve created nine free printable addition games. The first six games each focus on a particular set of facts:
- +0, +1, +2
- Doubles facts
- Make 10 facts
- “Using 10’s” facts
- “Using doubles” facts
In the sidebar of each game you’ll find strategies that you and your learners might find helpful. If the sidebar is a distraction when your child is playing, you can fold it underneath the game.
Did I mention that these games are NO PREP? Just print and play!
How to play
- Take turns reading a fact and covering it, coloring it, or dotting it with a Do-a-dot marker (our favorite way to play!)
- Whoever gets four in a row first, wins.
The first game is an easy one. It reviews the +0, +1, and +2 facts.
The second game includes a set of facts I don’t remember on my first grade flashcards: adding ten.
For some reason, the doubles facts are usually easy and fun for kids to learn.
The next game features sums to ten. (Have you seen my free card game that features sums to ten?)
Here’s where strategy really comes into play. How can kids use their understanding of ten to solve the harder math facts?
Finally, kids can use what they know about doubles facts to play this game. We often call these “doubles plus one” facts.
The download also includes three mixed practice games, for a total of nine no prep addition games.
Get your free addition fact strategy games!
MEMBERS GET MORE!
WATCH THE MEMBER TRAINING
How do you teach the concept of addition?
- Start at the beginning with lots of counting practice.
- Use contextual examples.
- Use manipulatives first; then move students into centers and have them worksheets.
- Teach two addition models (join and part-part-whole).
This 22-minute training includes videos of my preschooler and kindergartner as they learn basic counting/addition principles.