Saturday, January 17, 2015

Base 10 {knowing you're ready to trade in}

I'm really working on building number sense with my kids this year.  I've beefed up my calendar and am working in more counting, grouping and just thinking about what numbers mean.  My 1st graders are able to count base 10 blocks in front of them but the wording of the standardized tests threw them {don't get me started} so I decided to have them dive in and look at grouping as much as possible.  In the words of Mr. Wonka himself, we're going sideways, slantways, longways and backways with place value.

One station was to take a Base 10 card and write the number.  I got these for free from TpT.

Another station was the reverse skill where they chose a number and had to build it.  If they could figure out then tens and ones by looking at the number I let them do that.  But the kids who still need some place value help had to count out the ones and then make groups of ten to trade in.

A third similar, but still different, station was to choose a dot card, count the amount and build it.

And then there was that group of little kinders that just. didn't. get it.  I even made up a little jingle about trading for a 10 but hey, if you can't count to ten, it doesn't do much good to sing, am I right?  :)  So for these little babies, I made a workmat.  And it made all the difference in the world!

Here we are, actually working through it as a group.  I picked a number and we all counted it out as ones.  Once we had the right amount, we filled up the ones on our workmat and pushed them over to the ten outline to double check that we had enough to trade in.  After I checked, they traded their 10 ones by giving them to me and receiving a ten stick.  Then they finished putting the rest of their ones on the workmat and we counted by adding on.  {10...ll, 12, 13}

The next day, they practiced without me {sshhhh...kind of} with these color coded baggies I made.  They chose a bag practiced just counting one to one and knowing when there were enough to trade in for a 10 stick.

You can download your free workmat by clicking the yellow picture above or this picture of it below. There are actually a few options.  I preferred to have my ones all scattered but there is also a workmat with the ones in an array of two rows of five.  Then both of those pages are also duplicated with a place for two 10s in case you want to be able to work on teen numbers.

Let me know if these help you out!  I have a feeling it'll be a regular tool in my room for a while.  :)  Happy trading in!


  1. I tried downloading the free base 10 workmats and get mixed up words for "look" and "like".

    1. Oops!! I relinked both pictures, Theresa. Let me know if you get redirected agin.


Thanks for the comments! {like virtual hugs}

Blogging tips