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Assessing Writing Numbers

Alignments to Content Standards: K.CC.A.3


  • In a small group or whole group setting, give each student a piece of paper. It may be useful to use 1 inch graph paper and have the student write each number in a different box to help with spacing.
  • Ask students to write the number that is spoken, and then say, “Write (number name)”. Give the numbers from 0-10 in random order.
Students who have trouble writing certain numbers can then get targeted practice. It is also important to assess students writing of the numbers 11-20; perhaps after students are able to write 0-10.

IM Commentary

  • Students may reverse numbers when writing them, such as the number 3 or 5 as well as 6 and 9.

  • Writing teen numbers can pose challenges for students because of the way they sound when spoken. Teen numbers (13-19) are read/spoken from right to left while other numbers are not. When “16” is spoken one hears the sound of “6” before the “teen” part and so students will often start writing with a “6” and then pause and add the “1,” sometimes in front of the “6” but often behind it because they hear the “teen” part second when speaking the number name.

  • This task is presented to the students orally to ensure that students are associating the symbol they write with a number name. Although it may seem like a way to modify this assessment you should not show the number “10” and then say “write 10” when giving this task. This presentation will make it hard to determine if a student is copying a visual image they have seen or actually is associating a number name with a symbol. It is also important to assess a student’s ability to read and sequence numbers prior to or at least along with, the ability to write a number. In general, we should see some level of facility with reading numbers prior to writing them.


The student should be able to write the numbers from 0-10 and then from 10-20. Students may make errors in the teen numbers as noted in the commentary.

Ellen Daugherty says:

almost 5 years

The commentary states that students MAY reverse their numbers. Does that mean that you would consider the standard mastered or partially mastered? Would you ultimately expect them to write them all correctly to be considered full mastery of this standard?