Additional Math Pages & Resources

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Learning to Count and Add Objects

Here's a fun way to help your students to count objects and prepare to add numbers. This lesson is an introduction to addition.

In Excel Math, we help grow confident students who begin to love mathematics as they build foundational math skills and learn they can be successful at elementary math. Learn more on our website:

Have three to five students come to the front of the room. They can pretend to be horses, birds, fish or any other creature as they move. Just have them all be the same kind of creature.

Let the class make up a story about the creatures. For example, “Two horses were playing in a field. Another horse came along and joined them.” Ask the class, How many horses are playing in the field?” Count the students, touching a shoulder as you count each one. After several examples, start writing the number sentence on the board as you go through the story.
Go through several of the horse stories together, showing how the numbers in the number sentence match the number of children who are pretending to be horses.

Have five students come to the front of the room. Do not say how many students, only their names. Ask two to sit on the floor by saying their names.

Ask how many are sitting on the floor. (two) Invite the other three by name to sit. Ask the class how many students sat down that time. (three) Ask how many total students are sitting down. (five)

Write 2 + 3 = 5 on the board. Have a student come forward and check the answer by counting how many are sitting on the floor.

Excel Math Base Ten Chart
Visit our website for Base Ten Cards:
If you have an abacus, blocks, plastic eggs, or other manipulatives, use them to show 2 + 3 = 5. Have a student come forward and check the answer by counting the blocks, beads, or other objects.

Let your students create similar stories using other creatures (birds, transformers, elephants) or inanimate objects such as flowers, eggs, kites, or popcorn kernels. Have students come forward as you count and add the objects. Then write the equation on the board.

Give each student a grid similar to the one below or a base ten chart (see a sample on the left). Visit our website for this chart and more reproducible base ten cards. Also hand out beans, checkers or other counters so your students can duplicate the equations using their own counters and cards.

Visit our online Timed Basic Fact Practice and have your students choose addition for minute-long practice sessions adding numbers from 0 to 12.

New to Excel Math? Take a look at elementary math lessons that really work for Kindergarten through Sixth Grade on our website: Also find lots of math resources for teachers, parents and students at

No comments:

Post a Comment

Type your comment here