Place Value Relationships

Understanding place value is an important Math skill for elementary students.  One of the objectives is for students to describe the relationship between places in a base ten system.  Although this may seem difficult at first, starting with concrete manipulatives can really help students gain a deeper understanding.


I like to start by letting students “play” with the blocks for a few minutes.  Then I will ask specific questions and have them use the blocks to work out answers.  One such example is “How many ones do you need to equal a ten?” or “How many tens can you use to make one hundred?”  Give students time to work together or independently with the blocks to answer the question, then discuss.  I also like to write the questions/answers on the board or have a record sheet for them to work along with.


After students have a lot of practice discussing and writing the relationships with place value blocks, a place value chart will come in handy.  I like to use different colors and draw arrows on the place value chart to show the students the patterns on the chart.


I also teach students how to draw their own place value charts.  When working word problems with relationships, I have my students draw and label place value charts.



If you are looking for resources to help your students master this objective, I have two great resources in my TpT store:

Place Value Relationships Task Cards:


Place Value Relationships Notes and Practice:



Back To School Math

Guess what?!?  It’s time to get ready to go back to school!  Here in my little world we have less than 2 weeks left until the kids are back in school!



If you are a parent looking for something to use to help our kids brush up on Math Skills before the school year stats off, I have something perfect for you!  If you are a teacher looking for classroom work to help get your students back into gear, I also have something for you!


My Back to School Math Practice is perfect for  elementary students!  It includes 14 pages of Math skills ranging from addition and rounding to multiplication and division! The cute graphics will keep your students engaged while they brush up on skills!


5 Summer Math Tips


Summer Slide is a term often used to describe the backwards slide in academic skills that can happen over a long summer break.  Spending a little time several days a week on Math skills can help your child keep his/her skills sharp and be ready when school starts in the fall.


  1. Make it fun!  Your kids are less likely to complain about doing “school stuff” over the summer if you make it fun.  Play a classic board game such as Yatzee or Monopoly.  Give your child a pencil and paper and let them use it for scratch paper to work out the Math involved.  Help when needed, but also let your child work out the problems they can.  For more Math Fun ideas check out this post.



2.  Practice  Math Facts.  Most Math curriculums are fast paced and a lot of skills are covered during the school year, so practicing basic facts in the Summer can help your child to keep up during the school year when he/she is applying these facts to more complicated problem solving.  Not sure where to start?   Generally students 1st grade and up need to practice addition and subtraction facts and 3rd and up can start on Multiplication and Division.  You can pick up flash cards at most bookstores or variety stores or you can make your own.  Here are some tips for using multiplication cards that can be applied for any flashcards.  If your child doesn’t do well with Flash Cards, you can try a Math App or Website to practice facts!  One of my favorites is the Math Magician by Oswego Schools:

math magician


3.  Watch educational videos.  For all grades you can find videos on Math Game Time.  In addition,  Scholastic Study Jams and PBS Cyberchase both have  great Math videos for grades 3 and up.



4.  Talk about Math as you go about your day to day routines. Involve your child in the Math related to cooking, shopping, playing with toys, driving to grandmas! There are so many opportunities to fit Math discussions and Math problem solving into your day!



5.  Workbooks and worksheets can also be helpful.  If you visit your local teacher supply store or look online at Amazon, you can find many great workbooks.  Office supply stores will often have a small educational section where you can find workbooks.  Just remember to balance the worksheets out with fun activities and real world experiences like suggested above.






5 Summer Reading Tips


Summer Slide is a term used to describe the slide backwards that often happens if children do not spend time on academic related skills over the Summer.  There are many fun ways to keep your child reading over the Summer to prevent them from getting behind and to even get them ahead of the game!

1. Sign up for a Summer Reading Club at your local library or bookstore.  Barnes and Noble and Half Price Books have details online about their free programs.

2. Make Reading part of your family activities.  Have everyone bring a book when you go to the park or even when out running errands.  If kids have books around, they will be more likely to pick one up and read during a down time.


3.  Find fun, unique Reading related side trips for your family.  I have recently learned about the tiny libraries!  Look online and find the closest one too you.  Have your kids take a favorite book to donate and swap for one in the library!   A trip to your local public library or a bookstore you haven’t been to can also motivate your child to pick a new book!


4. Get the high frequency word list (aka site words) for next year and make a game out of learning the words.  Many school districts post the word lists on their website under the curriculum section.  Write the words on index cards and play games such as connect four using the cards.  See the directions for using flash cards with Connect Four here.  The Reading Mama has a free blackout game for site words on her blog or you can take it outside and play this fun sight word hopscotch!

5.  Play Summer Reading Bingo to motivate your child to read more.  Research shows that the more a child reads, the better reader they become (go figure)!  Here is a blog post by The Chirping Moms with free printable pages and suggestions for reading bingo.

Compose & Decompose Freebie!

Are you looking for FREE resources to help teach your students how to compose and decompose numbers?  Well, I have a great resource for you here!  This is set of notes and practice problems for composing and decomposing 3 digit through 5 digit numbers.  The target grade level is 2nd – 5th.



Want more freebies?   Kari B. Camp has a link-up with many different free products from several sellers.  This is a excellent way to get some great resources for FREE! If you like the resources you download, please take a few minutes to leave feedback for the authors!