4 Square Fact or Fiction

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SWBAT identify the number sentence in a group that is not true.

Big Idea

Which one of these is not like the other?! Students apply their understanding of 3 addend equations to decide which number sentence in a group of 4 is false. First person to find the false number sentence wins!

Hook and Objective

5 minutes

CCSS Context:

This lesson incorporates quite a few Common Core standards. As all teachers know, there never seems to be enough time in the year! This lesson allows you to address and review multiple standards in one day. Students are applying their understanding of 1.OA.D7 to prove if statements are true or false. They are also expected to use the academic vocabulary of "true" and "false" throughout the lesson. Students also are given 3 addend equations and apply their understanding of the associative property to make adding those 3 numbers more efficient (1.OA.B3).


We have been proving whether or not a statement is true or false. Today we are going to use what we have been practicing to help us figure out which statement is false. We are going to learn how to play a game called Four Square to help us do this!


Your thinking job today is: Which statement in this group is false and how can I prove it?


*Beyond Belief Fact of Fiction image copyright Fox Broadcasting Company.

Opening Discussion

15 minutes

Present Problem: I was solving number sentences for my homework. I made a mistake on one. Can you find my mistake?

  • 9 + 1 + 1 = 10 + 1
  • 14 - 2 = 10 + 2
  • 35 = 35
  • 13 + 4 = 9

Partner talk Questions:

  • Can you know for sure by just looking at these? Why not?
  • Is there one that you are sure is right or wrong immediately? Which one?
  • What can we do to show if the other ones are true or false?


I'll quickly divide the class into 3 groups and have each group work on solving one of the equations we have listed here on a white boards. That group will have to prove to the other groups that the equation is true or false.

After 3-4 minutes of solving time, I'll choose a student presenter from each group to present their answer to the class.

After presentations, we will circle the one that is incorrect and partner talk about why it is incorrect.





Game Rules and Practice

15 minutes

We are going to play a game called 4 Square. The object of the game is to prove whether or not each statement is true or false, and to find the false one!

Game Rules:

1. Both players lay the gameboards face down.

2. On the count of 3, they turn them over.

3. Each player starts proving each statement. They show their strategies and write true or false with each one.

4. The first player to find the false statement moves to help the other player find it

5. Cut out the cards. Tape the true ones to our TRUE chart and the false ones to the FALSE chart.

We will practice with the Group A 1 Gameboard on the rug. I will play against another student and model appropriate behavior-particularly kind words, good sportsmanship, etc.

Game Play

15 minutes

Students continue to work on different game boards with a partner. Choose partners carefully for this activity! Students should be matched based on current speed of their math facts. Pairing a student who is doing mental math with a student who needs to use cubes will lead to a frustrated game time. I have my partners planned out ahead of time to avoid that problem!

Attached you will find the gameboards for the game.

Group A :Sums under 10

Group B: Sums under 20; sometimes 3 addend equations

Group C: Often 3 addends; sums under 120



10 minutes

I'll share one piece of exemplar work and then do an exit ticket for the day. This exit ticket asks students to find the false statement, but is in Multiple Choice format. I use exit tickets as a way to expose students to a variety of question formats so no matter what assessment they take, they are ready to take it on!

Exit Ticket Attached