Game: What's the Missing Number? (Distributive Property)

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SWBAT use the distributive property and other regrouping properties to simplify multiplication involving 6s, 7s, & 8s by rewriting one of the factors.

Big Idea

The Distributive Property can make multiplication easier by breaking a number sentence into easier problems.


5 minutes

Our lesson today deals with factors of 6, 7, & 8.  In previous lessons, we have worked with smaller factors for multiplication.  Our lessons gradually add larger factors for the students to comprehend.

We have been studying the distributive property.  Who remembers why using the distributive property is a good method to multiply?  I allow the students a few minutes to think about the question.  I let one or two students share their responses with the class.  Today, after we watch a short video, we will play a game to practice using the distributive property.

Class Review

5 minutes

I remind the students that we have already worked on the distributive property.  Therefore, for today's lesson, I am showing you a Brainpop video to review the skill.  (I use the Brainpop video because I find that the students enjoy watching Brainpop videos.  It gives them a break from listening to the teacher.)  I call the students to the carpet so that I can monitor the class and make sure that all students are focused on the video. 

As the students watch the video, I monitor to make sure all eyes are on the board.

 At the end of the video, I review the distributive property with the students.  I remind the students that with the distributive property, they break apart one of the larger numbers into two smaller numbers.  

I tell the students that they can now go back to their seats.  I give the students the exciting news that today, they play a game using the distributive property.

Game/Group Activity

30 minutes

I put the students into groups of 3.  Each student will have a turn to find the missing numbers in a multiplication sentence.  Each student will have a role; there will be a timer, recorder, and player.  The "timer" will monitor the time as the "player" tries to find the missing numbers.  The "player" will have 1 minute to figure out the missing numbers.  The "recorder" will give the student a point if they get all of the numbers correct (This corresponds with MP1 because the player must make sense of the problem and persevere in solving it.)  After the first player finishes their turn, the roles will switch.  The students should rotate roles going clockwise.  The student with the most points when all the multiplication sentences are gone from the basket is the winner.  Students should check their teammates' work for accuracy (This corresponds with MP6 because the player must be precise in finding the answer).  

Because this is a review skill, I will monitor the classroom to listen in on student s and how they solve for the distributive property.  From my observation, I will identify students who need remediation.  I am looking for students who can't break apart the larger factor into two smaller numbers correctly.




Materials:  Timer, Recorder Sheet, and Multiplication Sentences

Independent Activity

10 minutes

I give the students an independent activity because I want to see what the students know on their own.  It is great to do group activities, but as a teacher, we must assess students independently to know if they have mastered a skill.  

For this activity, the students take out a piece of paper and follow the directions on the board.  I collect the papers when they are completed.  I use this data to assess the students understanding of the distributive property.


Write to Explain:  Write a paragraph explaining how to solve 7 x 8 using the distributive property.


5 minutes

Rationale for homework:  

Homework is a connection between school and home.  I like to give homework to students so that their parents can know exactly what their child was working on in class that day.  Also, it allows the parent to help the student at home.


As the students exit my classroom, I give them their homework sheet.  The students must complete the homework at home, then return it to my class the next day.  At the beginning of the next class, we discuss the homework assignment. I like to use a document camera to display the student work (Student Work - Distributive Property (Homework)).  It gives those students who do not understand the opportunity to see good student work.  I call on students to give me the answer to the homework problems.  This is also an opportunity for the students to ask questions for any problems they did not understand.

If students need additional practice at home, they can practice the different properties at the following sites: