Today I want to share with you an estimating and counting activity that I did with a group of 5 first graders.
|The manipulative of choice today was gemstones. These are always a big hit with kids! I bought a multi-colored pack of them years ago and have slowly been adding to the collection over time. They are colorful and fun and flat so they don't roll off the table!|
I started by dumping out the gemstones and pulling 10 to the side. Based on this, I asked each kid to estimate how many were on the table. Because we have been practicing reading and writing numbers to 120, I had them each record their estimate on the whiteboard.
|You can see the estimates went up quite a bit. Some kids needed to ask for help from their peers on how to write a number of this size. I also noticed that kids were more confident and everyone chose a different number.|
We counted by 10's around the circle and found that we had 100 gemstones counted. We also double checked our counting by counting by 20's around the circle. The kids had never been asked to do this before but it went very well. They quickly realized that they could think about counting by 10's to help them with this. We also discussed the idea that it did not matter who started the counting or what direction we went around the circle, there would still be 100. One little girl thought we should count by 5's as well (hers were arranged in more distinct groups of 5) we did that which was another great way to practice an important first grade skill.
I then let kids make one last estimate.
We again counted by 10's (OVER 100!!!)
Our pile in the center of the table was getting quite small. I asked kids if there was enough for everyone to take 10 more and they were sure there were not. I asked for ideas about how many more they could each take. After some discussion, we came to an agreement that 5 more would work.
|Here is a final shot of what the table looked like when we were finished. We counted them all by 10's and then had 1 left over.|
How do you work on counting and estimating in your classroom?