What is Place Value:
To teach children the numerical value of a digit in a number, students need visuals, models, and manipulatives to help them understand why the placement of numbers matter.
Visual and Kinesthetic Learning Tips:
To introduce the concept, I start with tens and ones to help my students understand that numbers can be built with place value blocks. I teach them that ten ones (in yellow) equal one ten rod (in green). Students practice creating numbers with the ones, and then the tens and ones.
The board is also extremely helpful when helping students understand how many tens and ones are in a number. Students who are experiencing difficulty could build the number on the board and then easily transfer their results on the paper to help them understand the concept.
Another feature I love about this board is how it is color coded. This becomes useful when I write numbers since I can stay with the original color scheme when writing a number. Although yellow can be hard to read, orange can be used as a substitute if students are experiencing difficulty reading in that color. Once I write the numbers, I then ask students to tell me the value of each number. This introduction to place value begins at the main teacher table (in my classroom, we have three to four rotating centers throughout our math period).
Greater Than/Less Than: Comparing Numbers
At station two, students practice comparing the value of each digit by comparing numbers. Since some students confuse the greater/than less sign, additional visuals of a gator can help students remember the meaning of the sign (the gator eats the largest number). At this station, students do a variety of activities to practice. One of my favorite includes a ‘roll and make’ game that has students roll the number, make the number, expand, and then compare the number. A free sample of the game is here.
Read and Write
At station 3, students practice reading and writing numbers. Students are taught to not say “and” when reading numbers. They can practice this over and over again with new numbers written by other students at the table. A great resource I love are the write and wipe boards featured below. This is a highly recommended resource when teaching place value!