Want to help your child brush up on number sense? Try this fun activity!
It’s time for a new math series! I’m teaming up with Malia of Playdough to Plato and Becky of This Reading Mama to offer you six weeks of free math activities for K-2!
This week we’re tackling number sense.
What is number sense?
In her book, About Teaching Mathematics, Marilyn Burns defines it this way:
Number sense. [Children have number sense when they] can think and reason flexibly with numbers, use numbers to solve problems, spot unreasonable answers, understand how numbers can be taken apart and put together in different ways, see connections among operations, figure mentally, and make reasonable estimates.
This week’s activity helps children think about numbers as they relate to each other. By asking themselves questions about numbers, children will also learn to think about whether answers are reasonable or unreasonable.
For example – would it be reasonable to own ten pencils? Would it be reasonable to have ten flowers? How about ten cars?
This game was designed with first graders in mind, but you could play it with preschoolers and kindergartners if they can identify numbers 1-100.
To play, I brought out my preschooler’s plastic hundreds board (which we LOVE!) and the free printable materials found at the end of this post.
- Print out the hundreds chart, Yes & No mat, question cards, and picture cards found in the download. Cut apart the cards.
- Take turns rolling a die.
- When you roll the die, refer to the question cards to find out which question to ask.
- Draw a picture card. Locate the number on the 100s chart. You can cover it, color it, or just point to it.
- Ask yourself the question in relation to the card. For example:
Do you want 6 mittens?
Could a person have 22 socks?
Do you have 100 crayons?
5. After you decide on a “yes” or “no” answer, place your card on the proper section of the Yes & No mat.
As you can see, this isn’t a competitive game. It’s just a fun way to think about numbers! And because you draw different cards depending on what number you roll, it can be a different game each time you play.
Here’s how the game looks in action:
My first grader rolled a four. He looked up at the question cards. When you roll a four, you ask yourself, “Do you want this many?” He drew a picture card. It said, “16 bathrooms.” He located 16 on the hundreds chart and covered it. Then, looking at the picture card, my son asked himself, “Do I want 16 bathrooms?”
His answer was a definite no. “Because then I’d have to clean them all!” Good answer. 🙂
He placed the picture car on the “No” section of the Yes & No mat.
Sometimes we weren’t sure about the answer. Could a person have 49 pairs of scissors? Maybe an art teacher would, so we said “Yes.”
Do you want to have 99 books? “Yes!” my first grader exclaimed.
Is it possible to have 44 baby brothers? Probably not. 🙂
We hope you enjoy building number sense with this activity!
Don’t miss the rest of this week’s activities!
This Reading Mama has a Roll & Race number sense game for kindergartners.
Playdough to Plato has a More and Less game for second graders.
Get all the posts in the series!
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