# Math Lesson Plan: Popsicle Stick Regrouping Fun

Objectives:

1. Learning and practising regrouping
2. Print examples of regrouping in student math journals

Materials for each group of 4-6 students:

1. twenty groups of 10 popsicle sticks or toothpicks gathered with an elastic, plus 10-20 loose popsicle sticks (students can count out sets of 10 on their desks and you can help them wrap the elastics around them)
2. index cards with numerals 0-9 on them, one number on each card, as well as cards printed with  “+” ,  “-“, “Ones”, “Tens”, and “Hundreds”, PLUS SOME BLANK INDEX CARDS (for the answers).
3. math journals for each student
4. pencils and erasers for each student
5. Chalkboard or Chartboard showing an example of one addition question plus one subtraction question, heading up the columns with “Hundreds”, “Tens” and “Ones”.  The title above the two questions says “Regrouping”.
6. Marker for each group (to write the numerals needed for the answer cards)
1. Each group of students finds an area to sit in a group, either in a gathering of their 4-6 desks or on the floor somewhere.  Teacher gives each group ten numeral cards 0-9, plus cards with “+”, “-“,  “Ones”, “Tens” and “Hundreds”, plus some blank index cards.  Also give twenty bunches of 10 popsicle sticks gathered with elastics, plus 10-20 loose popsicle sticks.   They each have their pencils and erasers and math journals with them.
2. Teacher tells students, “We are going to practise regrouping.  First we’ll ‘make’ the number with the cards, then we’ll ‘make’ the number with the popsicle sticks.  We’ll learn how to ‘regroup’ the digits so that we can add or subtract the numbers really easily.”(Teacher info:  I mix the grades in the groups, so that all groups comprise of both grades; the grade 2’s LOVE to help the grade 1’s master this.  Grade 1’s just have to add or subtract to 100, Grade 2’s up to 200.)
3. Teacher then calls all students together in a learning circle and tells them that we’re going to do the first few questions together.  Work with the students as a group for a few minutes until they ‘get’ the idea.
4. Put down a card that says “Ones”.  Tell students that only numbers with one digit can go under this card.  Have them tell you all the numbers with one digit (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9).  Tell students that therefore only up to 9 popsicle sticks can STAY** under this column.   Once you have 10 popsicle sticks, you need to regroup them into a group of 10 with an elastic around them and move them into another group.
5. Put down the “Tens” card to the left of the “Ones” card.  Tell students that only up to 9 groups of ten popsicle sticks can STAY** there (**This is important because when you regroup later you will have to add 10 to a number in the Ones column so you may have 13 popsicle sticks in the Ones column for a minute or too**).  Once you get 10 groups of 10 popsicle sticks, (100, count by 10’s so they see that it’s 100) they have to go into a new column “Hundreds”.  Put that card to the left of the “Tens”.
6. Ask  a student to give you a two digit number (43).  Teacher puts down the card 4, then the card 3.  Ask for another number  (21).   Teacher puts down the card 2, then the card 1.  Line them up above each other, in tens and ones and hundreds columns.  Put the card “+” in front of the 21.
7. Get students to help you put the correct number of popsicle sticks on each number card.  Example:    3 popsicle sticks go on the “3” card.  4 groups of 10 popsicle sticks go on the “4” card EQUALING 43.  Ask students what number this makes.  Have them count the popsicle sticks to make sure it’s correct…10, 20, 30, 40, 41, 42, 43.
8. Do the same for 21….10, 20, 21.  Popsicle sticks sit on top of each numeral card.  Example 2 groups of 10 sit on the 2 and 1 single popsicle stick sits on the 1 card.
10. Do a subtraction question with them before you send them into their groups to work.  Try 51 – 29    Have students put the 5 groups of 10 on the “5”, the 1 single on the “1”, the 2 groups of 10 on the “2” and the 9 singles on the “9.  Ask them if they can take 9 away from the 1.  No, of course not.  Tell them that you need to “regroup” the popsicle sticks so that you can take away the 9.  Take one of the group from the numeral “5” , undo the elastic and put the 10 popsicle sticks with the 1 so you now have 11.  Can we take 9 from 11 now?  Yes.  Put the “2” in the “Ones” column on the blank answer card.  Now we have 40 take away 20.  Have them count the 4 groups and 2 groups of 10, so you take away 2 groups from 4 groups and you get 2 groups.  Put the 2 groups of 10 on the “Tens” answer card.  Have them count the answer and tell you what the numerals will be “2” and “2”.  Print the answer on the blank answer cards.    On the whiteboard, show them how you cross off the “51” and write ‘4 and 11’ above it so students can see you “regrouped” the “51” into ‘4 groups of 10 and 11′ which still add up to ’51’.  They can see how they got ‘2’ when they took away the 9 from the 11, and then they can see how they got ‘2 groups of 10’ when they took ‘2 groups of 10’ away from the ‘4 groups of 10’ which was regrouped into ‘4 groups of 10 and 11’.
11. Have students go back to their groups and either have them do a few questions you write on the chalkboard or chartboard, or call them out one at a time, orally, then taking up each question before giving out a new one.  Students now explain to you how they got the answer, explaining how they regrouped their popsicle sticks to you.
13. You can show students how to double check their answers for subtraction by adding the subtrahend and the difference (for subtraction). The popsicle sticks are still on the subtrahend and the difference (or answer)  (for subtraction).  You can also teach them the names of the numbers for addition:  add one addend to the other addend to get the sum (answer).

### One Response to “Popsicle Stick Regrouping Fun”

1. rw says:

Will be trying this with my granddaughter.