Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Subtraction Mania!

I don't know about you, but the best way for me to retain something important is for me to have fun and be engaged in whatever it is I am learning!  We figured if that is how the first grade teachers learn, then surely, that is how a first grader will want to learn as well!

Subtracting within 20 has been our target for the past few weeks and we wanted to review with the children some of the many strategies we have been practicing--using a number line, manipulates, seeing the relationship with addition facts, counting backwards, counting on....
We brainstormed some ideas with Mrs. Sayre, our tech guru, and we came up with some amazing subtraction stations for the children to work at in the LRC.

Station 1:Splat Subtraction
Students were given a number line and some play-doh to work with.  They had an equation
 like 14-3= ?  The children had to put a ball of play-doh on the numbers 1-14 then SPLAT 3 of the balls.  The number of balls that were not flattened was the answer.  We were able to get some fine motor and counting practice in this activity.

Station 2: Lego Subtraction

At this station, the children were given sets of Legos.  Their job was to take the larger Lego and count up how many bumps it had.  Then they took a smaller Lego and counted up how many bumps it had on it.  They then had to write the equation and solve.  They could check their work by putting the smaller Lego on top of the larger Lego and the bumps uncovered was the answer.  Many of the children wanted to go home and do this with their Lego sets! Yeah!!!

Station 3: Subtraction Machine

Children were given up to 20 pom poms.  They had to decide how many to put down the subtraction tube.  They solved the problem together and then they checked their answer by counting the rest of the pom-poms as they went through the equal tube.  Parents may have to start saving the cardboard boxes and tubes because I think many students wanted to build their own at home!

Station 4: Bean Bag Subtraction

At this station, the children had to throw 20 bean bags into the hoop.  They had to write the subtraction problem of how many all together minus how many bags were outside of the hoop and the answer should be how many bags were on the inside of the hoop.

These subtraction stations not only helped us build our on our knowledge of subtraction, but they also gave our students a chance to help each other, and to coach each other and to cheer each other on.  It was a Win Win for Subtraction Mania!

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