Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Order in the Classroom

Dana Hopkins
Collier County Schools


Students define and identify integers, rational, irrational, real, and complex numbers. They find examples of each and write them on note cards. They work in small groups to put each card in ascending or descending order.


Associates verbal names, written word names, and standard numerals with integers, rational numbers, irrational numbers, real numbers and complex numbers.

Understands the relative size of integers, rational numbers, irrational numbers, real numbers and complex numbers.


-Worksheet 1
-Chart 1
-Checklist 1(with student names written in)
-Overhead projector
-Ten (4X6) note cards for each student
-Handout 1(a,b,c,d,e)
-Big Paper Clips
-FCAT prep book, or similar text that gives definitions and examples of integers, rational, irrational, real, and complex numbers.
-A math textbook


-Print out the Associated File which includes the following:, Worksheet 1, Chart 1, Checklist 1 (write in student names), Handout 1(a,b,c,d, and e)
-Make one copy of Worksheet 1 for each student in the class.
-Make one overhead transparency sheet of Chart 1.
-Make two copies of each of the following:
a. Handout 1(a)
b. Handout 1(b)
c. Handout 1(c)
d. Handout 1(d)
e. Handout 1(e)


Opening Activity:
1. Have all of the students in the classroom stand up. Instruct them to order themselves from shortest to tallest.

2. Explain that the ability to order things is a useful skill. Allow a few minutes for discussion.

3. Tell students that ordering can be extended to more complex situations. The objective for today is to define, identify, and order integers, rational, irrational, real and complex numbers.

Developmental Activity:

1. Distribute Worksheet 1. (See Associated File) Instructe students to write only the definitions for the terms on worksheet 1. Students should use an FCAT prep book, or similar text that gives definitions of integers, rational, irrational, real, and complex numbers to look up the definitions. Examples of each term will be found later in the class period. (**While students are writing definitions, place CHART 1 on the overhead.)

3. Discuss students' definitions as a whole class.

4. Write the correct definition of terms on the overhead transparency (Chart 1). Students check their own papers and will answers if necessary.

5. Split students into groups of three.

6. Students choose a group runner, a group writer, and a group reader. The runner will get the materials, the writer will write on the overhead, and the reader will read the example to the class. Review cooperative worker expectations for your class.

7. Each group creates numerical examples for each of the terms defined above.

8. Instruct each group to choose one example from each defined term to write on the overhead projector.

9. The writer from each group writes the example on the overhead. The group reader reads out loud what the writer has written. (**The teacher should verbally tell the group if the answer is correct or incorrect. If it is incorrect, the teacher should redirect with a correct example.) Use a checklist to mark off each term as students read them out loud to the class.

10. After all of the groups have taken a turn and sat down, lay out 4X6 note cards on a front table or location.

11. Each group runner retrieves 5 note cards for each member of his or her group, the writer retrieves markers, and the reader retrieves one copy of either handout 1(a,b,c,d, or e). (**Mention to the students that some groups may have the same handout and some will have different handouts.)

12. Groups prepare all 15 note cards each from handout 1(a,b,c,d or e). Each student in the group prepares 5 cards.

13. Each student from the group chooses 5 cards that will be his own. Students write their first and last names on the back of each of their own 5 cards. They keep these same 5 cards throughout the lesson.

14. Tell students the following: On your set of five cards, you must have one integer, one irrational number, one rational number, one real number, and one complex number. (Each student will write down the term that corresponds to each numerical example on his or her note cards.)

15. If the symbol is not numerical, the student also must identify what standard number the symbol represents (eg. (pi) = 3.14)

16. Each group should verify their answers amongst group members. All members should agree.

17. Instruct students to choose one other group and then verify their answers with them as well. Encourage students to move around and visit other groups.

18. If there are any unresolved answers, the students should ask for teacher clarification.

19. After all of the cards have been prepared and identified, students should return to their seats.

20. Instruct the students to choose one of their 5 note cards.

21. Start from one end of the room.

22. (**Instruct the students to choose another card to present from their 5 if the card they planned to present has already been used. It will not be as effective if there are several duplicate cards.)

23. Students stand up one at a time and begin to order themselves from the greatest number to the least number. (**Instruct the students to say where they are going and why.)

24. While standing in order, have students read the cards. They will read the symbol (if applicable), the number, and the term that fits their type of number.
Indicate whether the student is correct and if not, allow other group members to help.

25. Every student should be standing up and should be in order from least to greatest. If the students are not in order, explain what needs to be corrected and give the students the opportunity to correct the mistake.

26. Students sit back down in their seats.

27. Have students choose another note card. Repeat the same process as above except have the students stand in order from greatest to least. Provide feedback.

28. Have students sit back in their seats.

29. Pass out one big paperclip to each student.

30. The students will clip their own 5 cards together and pass them in along with completed Worksheet 1.


Students verbally identify the mathematical name for each of the following numerical examples: integer, rational number, irrational number, real number, and complex number. Evidence will include correct verbal statements during the ordering activity.

-Students provide a written numerical example for each of the following:
integer, rational number, irrational number, real number, and complex number. Evidence will include students answers on corresponding note cards and on Worksheet.

- Students will stand up, stay on task, and actively participate. Students hold out their note cards and will order themselves from least to greatest or from greatest to least depending on teacher directions. Evidence includes students standing in the proper order as instructed.

Note those having difficulty. These students will need additional teaching, practicing, and feedback before being assessed again.

Attached Files

Worksheet 1 Chart 1 Handout 1 (a, b, c, d, and e)File Extension: pdf

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