I've Got Your Number! Writing Word Form From Standard (or Numeric ) Form Using Phone Numbers

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SWBAT read and write multi-digit whole numbers by expressing the number in standard form and then expressing it in word form.

Big Idea

In this fun little skilll and drill game, students use the familiarity of their phone number to practice reading multi-digit numbers in word form up to one million as they search who has their number!

Connecting Math to the Real World: Understanding the digits in a phone number.

7 minutes

Using phone numbers is a great way to personalize mastering this standard! In order to understand phone numbers better, we talked about the meaning of each of the sections of phone numbers.

Using this website as a guide, we discussed the meaning of the school phone number. We looked up few different numbers of tourist sites throughout the state, such as our capitol building, a museum in another large city nearby, and then a state park in the far north. We noted all the different area codes of the state. I explained that there are area code maps that show the area codes for each state. We looked up ours online and could see the locations of those tourist sites right on the map, making sense of our research and exercising Math Practice 2. As we discussed the meanings of the prefix and that we have two in our community, we were exercising Math Practice Standard 7 as we looked for the structure of the phone number and connected it to location in the state and then the city. We discussed how we don't always get to choose our line numbers, even though they represent us personally, except in the case of cell phones, if they aren't taken already. We talked about how the line numbers are unique.

We also talked about the importance of knowing your phone number but not sharing it with anyone online or with strangers. Many of my students don't know their phone numbers yet, so this exercise would force them to learn them.

 As we work to master the skill of converting standard form to word form, I told my students I had a fun activity that would help them with their phone numbers, recognizing the digits within them, and help them read multi-digit numbers more easily.


Core Lesson

20 minutes

Learnzillion LZ517: I like using Ginny Baldwin's lessons in Learnzillion,  because her teaching style is similar to mine. I could have made a lesson video on Educreations ap, but I decided to use her as a resource instead. I can stop in places to review or question students and adapt it to the needs of my classroom as questions arise or I suspect they do not understand the concept. Using the teaching strategy of pointing out common mistakes helps students master the standard more easily because it makes them aware of what they might do. I like to reach out for these type of technology support lessons because it frees me and gives me opportunities to pay attention to differentiation or RTI that I need to focus my energy on as I work to get students to read numbers correctly.

I started her lesson and we went over the place value chart and reviewed quickly as a whole class. We proceeded through the lesson stopping to read the numbers together and then I would play it as she proceeded, using this lesson as a read and check ourselves drill. The common mistake of writing 4008 and thinking it is 408 is right on! I emphasized that they needed to focus on listening to what they were saying and when they write the numbers use the strategy of saying OUT LOUD. I told them that I believe that when we hear our own voices read the number, we can better understand what we should write. I reviewed what she meant by "units" as we continued the lesson. I stopped the lesson to point to the place value chart. When I pointed to the unit of the period, my students were instructed to say "unit"! Then say "ones" or "thousands". That way, we drilled a little bit and reviewed the periods, understanding why commas are placed between the periods. I referenced the word "period" to be thought of like a house. The "unit" name would be like the roof with three rooms underneath. I drew a little v atop the place value chart to give them a visual understanding.


* When we were all done with her lesson, I asked students how to explain the difference between changing numbers from standard to word form and changing word to standard. I asked them what was helpful about watching this lesson on the SB. Several answered that they think that trying to take a standard form number to word form was harder because you had to think of how the words went and how they are spelled. This gives me insight to how we need to practice this skill and spiral it during the entire unit to derive a level of comfort. As we master standards about place value in this whole unit, I know that I need to continually spiral back to any weak points to reinforce language skills.

* The next step was for me to teach the Guided Practice whole group in the Learnzillion lesson. I had them use their notebooks to jot the notes from the guided practice.  I let them use a copy of number spelling words from twenty to one hundred. I also included the word "thousand" on that list because they have a hard time remembering that there is no "e" in that word,(thousend) even though they hear "e"  instead of "a". Teaching them spelling within math develops a sense of importance accuracy and expectation of excellence to write well across the curriculum, which is what CCSS is demanding. Math Practice Standard 6 expects that we push our students to be accurate.

*Teaching Hint: I used the strategy as before, cupping my hands around the numbers that need to be read first, I had them write those three down, continue and then question them again to see if they see the hundreds, tens, unit pattern in the larger numbers. They should stop before the unit word, and the unit word is followed or replaced by the comma.

i.e. 345,567 in word form would be written: 345 and read three hundred forty-five thousand comma five hundred sixty-seven . I cupped my hands around the 345 as I said it, wrote it down and went on. That way, no period is forgotten.



Practice: Who's got my number?

30 minutes

The Number Game Begins: A game of practicing writing, reading and listening.

I asked my students to write their phone number in their math notebook just as they have learned it. I quickly roved around the classroom checking for anyone who was having difficulty. Two students did not know their number and I needed to look it up for them in my records. After everyone was finished, I asked them to rewrite the number without and parenthesis or dashes. I roved around again, checking to see if they were following my directions correctly. When they were finished, I asked them to go back and put commas in the proper places. We reviewed how to do that and why we place the commas where we do. I re- explained the periods of ones, thousands and millions. I quickly roved around the classroom, checking to see that they mastered this. When everyone was finished, we discussed what we saw. They noticed right away that they had produced a number that was in the billions. I noticed that my students are aware of the billions period and can recognize it even though their actual number reading skills are very weak.

To get them to think about place value and the standard, I reminded them that we needed to read numbers up to one million, but if their number they produced was above 1 million, it was acceptable. I continued to keep them thinking about place value by asking them what we needed to do to get the number to be in the correct place value. They quickly and all agreed we needed to drop the area code. When they were all finished writing in their notebooks, I asked that they recopy the written number on a slip of scratch paper I had passed out.  I reminded them that they were expected to attend to precision and practice Math Practice Standard 6 by spelling  their number words correctly with commas and hyphens included. It needed to be very legible.

As students waited for others to get caught up, I told them they needed to log onto ixl.com, Section F A.3. I stopped them for a moment and explained that this is a word form activity that will keep them busy during the wait time as students catch up with each other and should be used during any down time during this activity.


In a nutshell, this is what was done:

Step 1.) Write your phone number in notebook:  800-555-9102 

Step 2. Drop hyphens: 8005559102

Step 3.) Add commas correctly: 8,005,559,102

Step 4.) Drop 800 for million place value:   5,559,102

Step 5.) Write in word form: five million, five hundred fifty-nine thousand, one hundred two

( on scrap paper) Ready to begin the game!

When I saw that everyone was done, I asked them to form a circle around the room and to bring their scratch papers. When we were all focused and settled, I asked them to crumple their papers up into a little ball. On the count of three, they threw the crumpled balls into the center of the circle. Then on the count of three everyone  went  in and grabbed  one that is different than their own.  I had them throw them again and repeat the process (like shuffling cards). 

Action! On the third pitch, they grabbed a ball and were asked to open it up. They needed to check that they didn't have their own number. They practiced reading it aloud independently first as I listened and checked their fluency. If there was a problem with the number or confusion, this gives them (me) a chance to catch it, and ask questions about it. I told them if the number was written incorrectly, they should read it as is, but praised them for noticing. I roved quickly and listened to the practice until I thought it was fairly drilled . I reminded them that  if a number is wrong, the owner of the number should still recognize it as being read incorrectly, but if they don't , it was their job to explain what needed to be corrected. This will give my students a chance to critique each others work as  Math Practice Standard 3 asks us to encourage. I think that in order to master this standard, students gain more from each other than just from me correcting them.After I stopped the music each time, I placed myself in spots where I could hear those whom I thought needed support and discreetly helped. This helped them gain the confidence they needed since there is a wide gap with mastery of this skill in my classroom.

What happens when a student finds their number? They yell " You've got my number!" When someone discovers that their partner has their number, they exchange their papers and the student keeps their number and goes back to their desk. The other student continues by first practicing the handed off number once before finding a partner and milling to music. The students in their desks need to log back onto IXL as instructed before and work at practicing the skill online. Everyone keeps going until all numbers are found and read correctly.

This goes a lot faster than I expected! It is high energy, a lot of fun and I think a great way to build confidence as we master this difficult skill!






Wrapping it up!

10 minutes

After the game was all done and all were seated, I asked them to come back to the circle. I asked the following closing questions.

Do you feel like you are better at this skill?  Two of my students shared that they felt like they were practicing without knowing they were practicing. One of the two said that she thought the lesson was hard. She said that she had to really think each time she read the number aloud. I had two students complain about numbers not being correct.

I asked :What is easier, word to standard or standard to word? My students all agreed that writing from written to standard was a lot easier than doing standard to written. They said that having to pay attention to the hyphens and spelling was difficult. Two of my students used the strategy of covering each section that wasn't being read in order to fluently read the number.

They all agreed that they enjoyed the lesson. I spent a few minutes closing the lesson with talking about where this skill will be important in real life and questioning them to make it relative to themselves.

When do we have to translate word form into standard form?

We discussed how checks are written, even though we use plastic credit cards mostly. They know that there are numbers in word form on checks. One student said he saw a wedding invitation with the date written in word form. It was a little challenging for them to come up with other examples, so I challenged them to be on the lookout and that I would give iPad time coupons to those who could bring me examples from the real world in the next week.