## Reflection: Developing a Conceptual Understanding Introduction to Change Unknown Problems - Section 1: Hook

Cubes are a useful tool for some students who need help visualizing a problem since they can move them around to represent the action in a problem.  When introducing a new kind of word problem, I sometimes have students work with cubes since it allows them to concretely experience the action in the problem.  When they see the "action" or "movement" in a problem they are better able to identify the appropriate operation.  Cubes and other manipulatives allow students to build towards reasoning abstractly (MP2).

As we progress through second grade the numbers in our word problems are getting larger so cubes become less practical for representing these problems.  However, I do find that they can be a useful tool when introducing a new kind of problem, especially when students are working in groups.  Students can also use base ten blocks which help students to understand/visualize tens and ones as well as cubes bundled into groups of ten, which also helps them to build their base ten understanding.

Using Cubes to Visualize a Problem
Developing a Conceptual Understanding: Using Cubes to Visualize a Problem

# Introduction to Change Unknown Problems

Unit 6: Three-Digit Addition and Subtraction
Lesson 8 of 13

## Big Idea: Students draw pictures to visualize a change unknown word problem.

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Standards:
Subject(s):
Math, Number Sense and Operations, addition, subtraction
45 minutes

### Caitlin Vaughan

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