Make Tens and Ones

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SWBAT use objects, pictures, and numbers to represent a ten and some ones.

Big Idea

Let’s make tens and ones! In this lesson students begin to transition from using manipulatives to represent tens and ones to drawing a quick picture.

Activating Strategy

10 minutes

In this lesson, children will transition from using groups of 10 connecting cubes to drawing quick pictures to represent tens and ones. When drawing quick pictures, a stick is drawn to represent 1 ten and circles are drawn to represent ones. Quick pictures are a quick, easy way to show tens and ones on the board or on paper.  The numbers 11 to 19 are sometimes difficult for children to conceptualize. As they become familiar with modeling these numbers, they will develop the idea that one ten and some ones is a "teen" amount.

I start the lesson by reading this problem to children:

Suppose you are picking flowers to make a bouquet. You can pick red flowers and yellow flowers. You can pick 10 flowers. How many of each color flower will you pick?

Let children draw pictures of 10 flowers using red and yellow for their flowers. Then have volunteers share their work.

  • How are all the bouquets alike? (They all show 10 flowers.)
  • How are they different?  (There are different numbers of red and yellow flowers.)


Teaching Strategies

15 minutes

I then read the following problem aloud and have children model the problem with connecting cubes in a ten frame.

Connie has 10 cubes. How can she arrange them to show 1 ten?

Have children use connecting cubes in a ten frame to represent their model.  By allowing them to use connecting cubes, it will help with the students ability to understand the concrete concept of this lesson.  It also, correlates with MP4.

  • How do you know that your drawing shows 1 ten?  (There are ten boxes in a ten frame and I drew 1 cube in each box.)
  • So, what is one way to show 10? (You can show 10 as 10 separate cubes in a ten frame.)

Then I have children model the group of ten in a different way by guiding them to connect the 10 cubes into a cube train and draw a representation of their work. Ask children to share their drawings.

  • How is this way to make 10 different from the first way? (This way shows 10 connected cubes that make a 10-cube train.)
  • How can both of your drawings show 1 ten? (They look different but they both use 10 cubes.)

Modeling 1 ten in a ten frame and as a 10-cube train helps children understand that 10 ones can be grouped to make 1 ten. In this lesson, children will explore another representation, the quick picture, to show tens and ones in teen numbers. 

I then display the Make Tens and Ones.ppt, and discuss the model (also found on the top of their worksheet).  I work through the model with children by having them trace the dashed circle around the 10 ones in the ten frame.

  • How many ones make 1 ten? (10 ones)
  • What are two ways to think about the number 10? (1 ten or 10 ones)
  • What are the three different ways 10 is shown in the model? (10 cubes in a cube train as 1 ten, a group of 10 single cubes, and a quick picture of 1 ten)


Independent Practice

30 minutes

I then hand out the Make Tens and Ones worksheet and we work through the first 2 problems together, with the students using connecting cubes.  I have children complete the questions by building the teen number with cubes, making a ten, and recording the number of tens and ones with numbers and a quick picture(a stick to represent 1 ten, and circles to represent 1 one).

Once students are ready, I release them to continue the worksheet independently.  For those struggling students, I have them use a ten frame to help them with a concrete model of building 1 ten.  This helps them to understand that the cubes that don’t fit in the ten frame are ones.


5 minutes

To close out the lesson, I have students get their math journal and choose a number from 11 to 19. I have them write the number, and use words and pictures to show how many tens and ones.