For the lesson, you will need a copy of Becky and Bart Count Their Blocks. (This book was used in the previous lesson, Becky and Bart Count Their Blocks). I print the book with a color printer and laminate the pages for durability. I then bind it with a comb binding machine, but book rings or stapling would also work well. You may also want some type of "telephone" to introduce the lesson to the students.
I have my cell phone "ring" and I "answer" it. I have the following conversation:
Hi Becky and Bart! How are you? I know, they are great counters, aren't they? Faster? Well, yeah...I think they can count them faster. Let me ask them. Boys and Girls...Becky and Bart thought you did a great job counting yesterday, but they are wondering if you can count them even faster than you did yesterday? What do you think... can you do that? (The children excitedly shout, "Yes! Yes!". I go back to the phone...okay, they said they can do it. I will let you know how it goes!"
Okay, boys and girls. We told Becky and Bart that you could count the blocks even faster than you did yesterday. I am wondering how we can do that. I call on a student. So, you think we should say "ten" for a full tower of blocks and count on from there just like we did with a full ten frame." What do you think boys and girls? Does that sound like it will work? Well, let's give it a try!
I begin reading the story to the students:
Page 1: This is Becky and Bart. They like to build with blocks. They organized their blocks by color. I also read what is in the speech bubble: Let’s find out how many blocks we have?
Page 2: Let’s count the red blocks. How many are there? I invite a student to come up and count the blocks. I remind the student that we are going to count the blocks "quickly" by counting the full tower of blocks as "ten" and then counting on from there. If they have difficulty, I assist them. I then have the entire class check their work by counting them together.
Page 3: Can you help me with the blue blocks. Another student is invited up to help count the blocks with the class checking in the same fashion as above.
Page 4: Now it’s time to count the green blocks. Again, a student comes up and counts the blocks.
Page 5: Wow!!! Our stacks of blocks look so nice. Let’s put them on the shelf.
Page 6: WATCH OUT!!
Page 7: Not again! I think we should just throw them in the toy box in the future.
Wow!! You did a great job, just like you did when we counted Sam's sporting goods. You really are Super Counters!!!! We then move to the Smartboard for the next part of the lesson.
For this portion of the lesson, I use the Counting with Base Ten Blocks-Understanding Place Value Smart Notebook File. If you have a different type of interactive whiteboard, you can still use this lesson by opening the file in Smart Notebook Express, or use the Counting with Base Ten Blocks-Understanding Place Value Notebook Slides included here.
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.
I can tell what number a set of base ten blocks is representing.
I can tell a friend how to decide what number a set of base ten blocks shows.
We then continue with the rest of the slides.
Slide 2: You really can count numbers using base ten blocks! Speech Bubble: Do you think you can count faster? I know you can!
Slide 3: We know that the tall stacks have 10. We can start counting with the number ten and not count each individual block. Speech Bubble: Count with me.
Slide 4: Can you count how many blocks are here? Remember to count the tower as ten. I invite a student to come up to the board and count the blocks. I make sure the student is counting on from ten. The student records the answer in the box. The entire class then counts as I point to the blocks to check the answer.
Slides 5 and 6: We continue as in Slide 4.
Slide 7: 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, How can you quickly count this number? I give the students time to talk. When it is obvious that they have an answer, I ask someone to share their group's answer with the entire class. The student's response is "You say ten for the tower and then count on from there, 11-12-13-14". I reiterate the students answer for the class, "I can say ten for a tower of blocks and then count on from there." I then ask the students how many blocks are there. I give them time to talk. I call on another student to share his group's answer. I then say the answer for the entire class, using a complete sentence, There are 14 blocks. I have the class repeat the sentence. We then move back to our seats for guided practice.
For this portion of the lesson, you will need snap cubes. I put together one orange rod of 10 cube for each student and one yellow rod of cubes. You can use whatever colors you have available. Having two colors provides support for students who are not at grade level by helping them know went to start a new tower of blocks. You will also need a ten sided die. If you do not have one, you can use the 0-10 Hanging Number Tags included with this lesson.
I pass the cubes out to the students and I have them unsnap the cubes and place them in piles by color at their spots. I tell the students, we are going to practice counting cubes just like we did with our last lesson. I will roll the die. We will put that number of orange cubes together. We will continue rolling until we have one tower or rod of ten and have started the second tower or rod. We will then count to see how many we have. This time when we count, we are going to count the full tower or rod as "ten" and then count on from there.
I go to the first student and roll the die. I ask the student to announce to the class what is rolled. They say seven. The students then begin to snap together the orange cubes. I wait until they are done. I then go to the next student and roll the die. They announce to the class, eight. The students snap eight cubes on to their rod or tower, switching to yellow after they have snapped the ten orange cubes together. I ask the students, did you start a new rod or tower? They say, “yes”. Okay, now it’s time to count the cubes. Remember to count that full tower or rod as "ten" and count on from there. Raise your hand when you know the answer. I give the students time to count. I remind students who are counting individual blocks to count the full tower as "ten". When they are done, I call on a student to share the answer with the class. I then ask the class if they agree with the answer. I have the students break apart the blocks and we do another example.
When I am confident the students understand the concept, I have them snap their cubes back together. I collect them and we move on to independent practice.
For this portion of the lesson, you need the Base Ten Roll A Die and Record Activity Sheet, one copy for each student. You will also need a ten-side die for each student.
I pass out the sheets to the students and have them put their names on top. I tell the students, we are going to practice working with our base ten blocks. We will do the exact same thing we just did, but instead of using real blocks, we will be coloring in blocks on our activity sheet. When we count the blocks this time, we will remember to count a full tower as ten and then count on from there. We will do a couple together to practice and then you will complete the rest on your own.
I roll the die the way I did during guided practice and have a student announce the number to the class. The student says 6. The students are instructed to color in 6 blocks on the first rod. When they are done, I roll again and another student tells the class the number rolled. This time it is a 9. The students color in 9 blocks. After they are done coloring, I ask them if they are in the second rod. They say, “yes”. I then tell them to count how many blocks are colored in and write their answer in the space provided. I remind them to count the first tower as "ten". I circulate around the room to monitor the students work and to listen to see if I hear them counting on from "ten". When they are done, I call on a student to share the answer with the class. I ask the class if they agree. We then do another one together.
Once I am confident the students understand the concept, they then work on their own. See video. After they complete their work, they bring it to me and I check their work and I have them demonstrate how to count the blocks. They then put the work in their mailbox.