Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Roll On Down!

Deborah Ford
Santa Rosa District Schools


This lesson reinforces the proper format for number sentences. Each student rolls two dice. Next, they write down the numbers in number sentence format. Then they add the problem by using the strategies of counting on, doubles, and doubles plus one.


The student demonstrates knowledge of the meaning of addition (putting together, increasing) and subtraction (taking away, comparing, finding the difference) using manipulatives, drawings, symbols, and story problems.


-Two dice per student
-Notebook paper per student
-Clipboard per student
-Two big dice for teacher
-Poster-size notebook paper (laminated to use over and over) or chalkboard or overhead projector


1. Have bucket of dice out and ready.
2. Gather notebook paper and clipboards for each student.
3. Have teacherís two big dice ready to use.
4. Prepare large poster-size notebook paper, chalkboard, or overhead projector.


*Numbers are examples only. You will probably roll something else when doing this lesson.

1. What do you think of when I say number sentences? (student response)

2. Today we will be making number sentences.

3. These are my dice (show the two big dice). I roll them on the floor like this.
-How many dots are on one of the dice? (student response) [Answer: 3]
-OK, I write a 3 on the board. Now if I am writing a number sentence, what do I write next? (student response) [Answer: plus sign]
-That's right a plus sign. Now how many dots are on the second dice? (student response) [Answer: 4]
-OK, I will write a 4 on the board. Where do I place the 4? (student response) [Answer: after the plus sign]
-Very good. I wrote down both numbers and put a plus sign between them. What is next? (student response) [Answer: write a 7]
-Are you sure? If I write a 7 then the number sentence says 3 + 47. That says three plus forty-seven. Is that what we want it to say? No, of course not. So what is missing? (student response) [Answer: the equal sign]
-Where does the equal sign go? (student response) [Answer: after the number 4]
-Then I write the answer 7. So, the number sentence reads 3 + 4 = 7. Very good!
[Note: Be sure to model the strategies students are to use to find the answer--counting on, doubles, and doubles plus one.]

4. Now I want everyone to number their paper 1-10 down the side and also skip a space like I have on my paper up here on the board. Once that is completed, you may get in the floor with your clipboard and start rolling dice and writing down the number sentences.

5. When you are finished, bring your paper to me so I can check it and put your dice back in the bucket.

6. If I find an error, you are to correct it. You may begin.


Teacher looks for:
1. Students' ten completed problems.
2. Students' use of the correct number sentence format (3 + 2 = 5).
3. Students' use of strategies--counting on, doubles, and doubles plus one. (If any students have difficulty with these strategies, then encourage them to find the answer the old fashion way - simply count all the dots.
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