Our district is fortunate to have two math coaches working in the district
as part of Race to the Top. I don't know much about Race to the Top, but
I do know that having these coaches in our rooms can be quite beneficial to the
teachers and students.

It's my turn to work with a coach. She is a teacher I like and
respect (and my daughters loved having her in 6th grade). We meet each
week to plan our lessons, and then we meet each day for a quick reflection of how
things are going. It's takes us a long time to plan each week, but I think it will pay off.

We are beginning two-digit addition, and both of us felt that the students
needed a review of tens and ones concepts. Here are some of the ideas
we've been using:

- How
many ways can you make 42 using only 10s and 1s? At first, the students
were allowed to use addition and subtraction in their number sentences. Responses
were interesting:
- 10
+ 10 - 10 + 1 + 1 + 1+ 1 + 1 -1 + 1 + 10 + 10 - 1 - 1 -1 = 32
- 10
+ 10 + 10 + 10 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 - 1 = 32

- Next,
the coach told students they could only use addition in their number sentences.
That proved more difficult for them at first. Eventually,
students found several ways, and we organized their responses into a
chart:

** Tens Ones Number Sentence**
** 4 2 40 + 2 = 42**

** 3 12 30 + 12 = 42**

** 2 22 20 + 22 = 42**

** 1 32 10 + 32 = 42**

** 0 42 0 + 42 = 42**

- We
used Monopoly money to show numbers in different ways. Students
made the leap that 6 tens and 14 ones is 74 because 14 is made up of 1 ten
and 4 ones. They also were able to tell me that 4 tens and 27 ones
is 67 because there were 4 tens and 2 tens (from 27) and 7 ones.

- We
also used connecting cubes to build numbers and discussed regrouping the
ones as tens when necessary.

- We
both are not fans of the traditional place-value models because students can't
break apart or regroup using them. However, since those models are
probably what they will see on the OAA in third grade, we also use them to
build numbers and model addition.

Whenever possible, I try to incorporate games into math so that students
can practice skills in fun, engaging ways. These games were hits in our
room:

- War
- Remove the face cards of decks of playing cards. Students
take turns drawing one card at a time. When a card is chosen, the student
must decide whether to place that card in the tens or ones column. Once
a card is placed in a column, it cannot be moved. Whoever makes the largest
number gets to keep the cards.

- Trash Can and 101 and
Out are two games explained in this video. I love 101 and Out because students are working with adding multiples of ten too.

When I get time, I will post pictures of what we've been doing.

I'm always looking for new ideas/games for basic place-value work. What are your favorites?