Teaching your students how to add and subtract can be really, really hard! I am always trying to find concrete ways to help the concepts stick, and teaching many math strategies to help my kindergarteners understand. Throughout the year, we use many addition activities, like these addition task cards, to practice the math strategies. They help make the practice fun and engaging!
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Setting up the task cards
These addition task cards make a great math center! Laminate the cards so your students can write on them with a dry-erase marker. They fit perfectly in plastic photo boxes of you can hole punch the corners and bind them together with binder rings.
If you are low on colored ink, you can also print the black & white pages onto colored paper to give them an extra pop.
I also like to set out the manipulatives needed for each addition strategy to give my students practice solving the equations. The most hands-on practice they get, the better!
Finally, I include recording sheets for my students to use to write down the equations they solved. This is a great way to hold them accountable during math centers while I am working with a small group. I also can use these as an informal assessment after math centers to see if my students are able to add the numbers correctly or if they’re not quite there yet.
Using the task cards
Have your students work in partners or small groups so they can help each other if needed. You can set out multiple strategy cards at once, or have your students focus on one specific strategy. They choose a card, grab the manipulatives they need, and get to work!
Using cubes to add
One of the first strategies we teach when learning addition is using cubes to add. We have a huge assortment of unifix cubes that came with our math curriculum but you can find some great deals on cubes online as well. Have your students count out how many cubes of each color is on the card and write those as the addends. Then they will put the cubes together and count how many cubes in all.
Using your fingers to add
We also teach our students how to use their fingers to add. We refer to this strategy A LOT because our fingers are always around! Have your students count how many fingers are up on each hand and then count how many fingers are up in all.
Using a ten frame to add
One of my favorite ways to practice adding is using a ten frame. This strategy is fun because you can change up the manipulatives to keep your students engaged. We use mini erasers from the dollar spot, play doh balls, unifix cubes, etc. You can have your students use two different manipulatives to show each added, or have them show the first addend on the top of the ten frame and the second one on the bottom.
Using a number line to add
This strategy is always one of the trickiest for my students to grasp. I teach them to circle the first number, then count how many “frog jumps” they need to add. The number they land on is the sum.
There are over 300 total task cards included so your students can get tons and tons of practice You can find these addition and subtraction task cards in my shop!