Lesson Plan

Justifying the Distributive Property

Let's talk about the distributive property! Give students a chance to explain their thinking of how and why this property of multiplication works. This lesson may be taught as a standalone or as support to the lesson Distributive Property.
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This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the Distributive Property lesson plan.
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This lesson can be used as a pre-lesson for the Distributive Property lesson plan.



Students will be able to apply the distributive property of multiplication.


Students will be able to explain the solution to a multiplication problem using partner support and a graphic organizer.


(3 minutes)
Sweet DistributionRefine Your Justifications!Glossary: Justifying the Distributive PropertyVocabulary Cards: Justifying the Distributive PropertyTeach Background Knowledge TemplateWrite Student-Facing Language Objectives Reference
  • Tell students that in math, there are often rules that apply to certain mathematical operations. These rules, or properties, often make it easier for us to solve certain math problems.
  • Inform students that today they will focus on one of these properties called the distributive property for multiplication. Tell students that the word "distribute" means to deal out or hand out something. Give examples of distributing, such as a teacher distributing pencils to students or a coach distributing soccer balls. Ask students to discuss their connections to the concept of distributing with a partner.
  • Read aloud the content and language objectives and have students repeat or rephrase them to a partner.