Focus on Math

Helping children become mathematicians!

Ten Frames for Learning Math: Basic Facts +5, =10 February 18, 2011

Ten frames (click to download), as discussed in the previous post, are powerful visual tools for helping students of all ages learn basic facts. Besides being helpful for facts that are +1, +2, +9, and +8, the ten frames are also great for +5 and =10 facts.

For the +5 facts, start with the 5 card. If you add any other number 1 to 5, when that card is laid beside (or partially on top of) the 5 card, together they look like one of the other cards 6-10. Since these cards are already familiar to the child, the answer to the fact can easily be visualized. If you add any number 6 to 9 to the five card, the cards can be placed so to see the column of 5 dots on the 5 card beside the column on 5 dots on the other card. Of course, the two columns of 5 together make 10, and then the remaining part of the second card is added to the 10. So, 5 + 8 becomes 5 + 5 + 3 or 10 + 3, a much easier fact to learn and remember.

The =10 facts are the ones apparent on every one of the ten frame cards. For instance, when looking at the 6 card, since there are 4 spaces without a dot, 4 must be added to make 10. The corresponding subtraction facts are useful here, as well. 10 – 4 = 6 is also clearly seen on the ten frame card for 6. The cards can be flipped over one at a time, and for each card the addition fact apparent from the dots and spaces can be practiced.
Remember, basic facts are basic! Have fun with them!
Mathematically yours,


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