I teach 2nd, but I would love some input from you 1st grade teachers I have a few in my class this year with ZERO number sense. They can't find pages in a book, because they don't understand the position or value of numbers. We're working with numbers through 100- counting forward, backwards, skip counting... any tips on how i can make this real for them? number lines are hard because we'll be working with 60s...then 30s... i've been working with a hundred chart, but nothing seems to be sticking. any advice? thanks in advance

Can you try ten frames. For example, can you show them 3 full ten frames, and one with only 2 squares filled. You can show them that the three 10's make 30, and then the other 2 are added on. I also use egg cartons to make ten frames. I cut off two of the "cups" and leave 10. We make numbers in the 10 frames with counters. I find when I work a lot with my students to show them how numbers are rooted in 5's and 10's, that skip counting gets easier. I hope that makes sense. :3)

Get manipulatives! Let them use all kinds of different manipulatives and be sure to let them have play time with them first. I think this helps make the numbers real. This year I gave the group graph paper and small beans, and they wrote the numbers 1-15 down the side, then glued on the corresponding number of beans. They could see and feel the actual numbers. Of course it might be hard to do this for numbers to 100, unless you did it as a bulletin board/class project. Involve the sense of touch and it might help. You might get the book Constructing Ideas About Counting. It is full of ideas for activities that take the abstract numbers and make them concrete. It is geared to 1st grade but if your 2nd graders are struggling it might be just the thing. Also, try incorporating games into your day - games that encourage critical thinking and math skills and logic will stimulate the part of the brain that gets the math thinking going. Checkers, chess, Uno, poker . . .