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Pick Two


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

Task

For each set of numbers below, pick two numbers that add to make six. Write an equation that shows that those two numbers add to make 6.

  1. 3, 5, 3
  2. 6, 0, 2
  3. 1, 6, 5
  4. 3, 2, 4
  5. 4, 2, 6

IM Commentary

Kindergarten students should see addition and subtraction equations, and student writing of equations in kindergarten is encouraged, but it is not required. This task could be used by teachers as an opportunity to gauge their students' ability to write equations and whether they may be ready to begin a discussion about what the equal sign means.

Because of the limited reading skills of kindergarten students, this task should be introduced by the teacher, followed by the students carrying out the activity.

Although this task asks for totals that make “6,” it may be repeated using any number through 10 to address K.OA.3.

Solution

Note that “6” may be on either side of the equation. Students should include one of the following solutions for each part of the task.

  1. 3 + 3 = 6 or 6 = 3 + 3
  2. 6 + 0 = 6; 0 + 6 = 6; 6 = 6 + 0; or 6 = 0 + 6
  3. 1 + 5 = 6; 5 + 1 = 6; 6 = 1 + 5; or 6 = 5 + 1
  4. 2 + 4 = 6; 4 + 2 = 6; 6 = 2 + 4; or 6 = 4 + 2
  5. 4 + 2 = 6; 2 + 4 = 6; 6 = 4 + 2; or 6 = 2 + 4

Sharon says:

over 2 years

Has anyone tried this task giving students a number bond template, say, with the "6" filled in the circle? This might support some of the writing leading up to the skill of writing an equation.....

Mandy Boudwin says:

over 6 years

This task asks for students to write equations. In the critical focus areas it states that Kindergarten students should be encouraged to write equations, but it isn't required. Would this be a fair statement to add to the commentary above? It could state something to the effect that teachers could use this as an opportunity to gauge student ability to write equations and whether they may be ready to begin a discussion about what the equal sign means (a standard not mastered until grade1)?

Kristin says:

over 6 years

Thanks, mboudwin, this is an excellent suggestion. I did add this to the commentary.