The Block Battle-Comparing 11-20 with More

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Students will be able to compare numbers (11-20) represented by a ten frame or base ten blocks to determine which one has more.

Big Idea

More is a familiar concepts for kindergarteners. Now they get to apply it to groups of 11-20 objects in this interactive lesson.


10 minutes

For this part of the lesson, you will need the book, The Great Block Battle.  I print the book on a colored printer and laminate the pages for durability.  I bind it with a comb binder, but book rings or stapling would also work,  You will also need an overhead marker or dry erase marker for the students to write in the book.

I gather the students by my big chair.  I show them the cover of the book.  I say, Do you recognized the children on this book cover? That's right.  It's Becky and Bart.  And what do they like to collect?  That's right.  They like to collect blocks.  The title of this book is "The Great Block Battle".  What does the word "battle" mean?  Right.  A battle is kind of like a fight.  Let's read our story to learn more about this "battle".

Page 1:  Do you remember Becky and Bart?  They like to build with blocks.  Lately, they have been arguing about who has more blocks.  Speech Bubbles:  I have more blocks!  No!! I do!

Page 2: Can you help settle their battle?  Let’s count and compare. Who has more red blocks?  I invite a student up to Bart's blocks and another one to count Becky's.  I remind the students that they can count a full stack of blocks as ten and count on from there. The students record the answer in the squares on the page.  I have the class count with me to check their answers.

Page 3: Now let’s count and compare.  Who has more green blocks? Again, two students are invited up to count and record the blocks with the class checking.

Page 4: Let’s count the blocks on the shelves.  Who has more?  Continue inviting students up to count.  I remind them that a full ten frame is ten.

Page 5: How about the blocks on these shelves?  Who has more?  Continue inviting students up. 

Page 6:  Thanks for helping us compare.  Sometimes Bart has more and sometimes Becky has more.  (Students say...I think it's going to happen again.  I think the blocks will fall!)

Page 7:  Watch out!  (Students laugh!)

Page 8:  Speech Bubbles:  I think we should just throw them in the toy box in the future.  Not again!

 We then move to our SMARTBoard spots to continue the lesson.


20 minutes

For this portion of the lesson, I use my SMARTBoard.  If you have a SMARTBoard, the file can easily be downloaded and opened.  If you have a different type of interactive whiteboard, you can still use this lesson by opening the file in Smart Notebook Express.  \ There is also a PDF of the slides so you can recreate this part of the lesson.

I gather my students in front of the SMARTBoard.  I have cards with each student's name on.  These cards are used for selecting who will come up to the SMARTBoard.

I open the first slide (Smartboard Slide 1) with the lesson objective written in "student friendly" terms.  There is a content objective and a language objective to help focus on vocabulary expansion for my English Learners (ELs) to be congruent with SIOP instructional techniques.  I read these objectives aloud for my students.

Content Objective
I can compare two numbers on a ten frame or with base ten blocks and tell which one is more.

Language Objective
I can tell a friend which group has more on a ten frame and base ten blocks.


We then continue with the rest of the slides.

Slide 2:  Let's compare to find out who has more blocks. can start counting with 10 when you have a full ten frame or stack of base ten blocks.

Slide 3:  Count and write the number in the box.  I invite two students up to count the blocks.  I invite another students to circle the one that has more.  We then summarize their work with a sentence...17 is more than 14.

Slide 4 and 5:  We continue as in slide 3. 

Slide 6:  Now let's try with a ten frame.  Count and write the number in the box.  Circle the one that has more.  I invite students up to the Smartboard to count as in the previous slide.  Another student circles the ten frame that has more.  We summarize their work with a comparatives sentence as above. 

Slide 7 and 8: Continue as above.

Slide 9:  It is now turn and talk time.  Turn and Talk allows my English Learners to practice their academic language with a peer. The students hold hands with their assigned Turn and Talk partner and lift their hands in the air so I can check that everyone has a partner.   I ask them the question, Can you tell who has more without counting?  Who?  Tell how you know. I give the students time to talk with their partners.  When I can see that the conversation has ended.  I invite a student to share.  The student says, "You can tell Becky has less because she has more empty squares on her ten frame.  Bart's is almost full." I ask the class if there are any other answers.  They agree that Becky has less, but some say, Bart has more because they can tell there are more circles on his ten frame.  It is obvious they have a strong conceptual understanding.  

Do not close the SMARTBoard file.  You will need it in the guided practice section of this lesson.

Guided Practice

10 minutes

For the guided practice portion of the lesson, you will need the Smartboard file from the previous lesson.  You will also need the Becky and Bart cards included as PDF with the lesson.  Each student needs a Becky and a Bart.  I run the cards on a colored printer and laminate them for durability.

I distribute the cards to the students and I tell them.  We are going to compare who has more blocks, Becky or Bart.  I am going to show you pictures of their blocks.  If Becky has more, you will hold her card up.  If Bart has more, you will hold his card up.  

We start with slide number ten of the SMARTBoard Lesson that was used in the Instruction portion of this lesson.   I ask the students, Who has more, Becky or Bart?  The students hold up their cards to show their answers.  We then put their answer into a sentence to reinforce vocabulary development..."Becky has more than Bart."

These cards give me a quick visual check of the students' understanding of the concept of more.  After we have completed the slides, I collect their Becky and Bart cards.  They will be used in the next lesson on "less".

Independent Practice and Informal Assessment

15 minutes

For this lesson, you will need the Comparing Number with Ten Frames and Base Ten activity sheet. You will also need the Numbers 11-20 for Activities, one copy per student.  I run half on one color and the other half on a different color paper so they do not get mixed up so easily at the tables while the students are working.  I cut the numbers apart and put them in small brown paper bags for the students to draw cards out of.  You can have the students use their pencils to fill in the ten frame or give the students ink pads and have them use their pencil erasers as a stamp to mark in the ten frames.

I distribute the activity sheet to the students and have them write their names at the top and then put their pencils down  I tell the students, we are going to practice comparing numbers with more.  Let's practice a problem together.  I reach into the bag and draw out a card.  I ask the students what it is.  They say 13.  Now I want you to write this number in the first space on your recording sheet.  Now, fill out the ten frame so it matches that number (MP2 - Reason abstractly and quantitatively).  I circulate around the room to make sure the students are filling in the ten frame correctly. (A ten frame is always filled from the upper left hand corner first, across the top, and then back to the left lower corner and across.)

When they are done, I draw a second number out.  I ask the the students what the number is.  They say 17.  I have them write that number in the other open spot and again fill out the ten frame.  When everyone is done, I ask, which ten frame has more spaces filled out, the one with 13 or the one with 17?  The students say, "17".  That's right.  Now, I want you to circle the number 17 because now we know that 17 is more than 13.

I feel confident that the students are ready to continue the independent practice on their own.  I explain to them that they will each have a bag with numbers.  They should draw two numbers out.  When they are done filling out the ten frame, recording the numbers and comparing them, they put the two numbers back in the bag.  This will keep them from getting any pairs that are equal.  "Equal" will be addressed in the next lesson.  When they are done with the ten frames, they continue on with the base ten blocks.

I circulate around the room while the student are working.  When they are done, they show me their work and then put it in their mailbox.