Lesson plan

Writing Simple Equations

Understanding how words translate into equations is a critical everyday math skill. Take your students step-by-step through this process in this lesson.
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With this math lesson plan, children will learn how to write simple equations. Young mathematicians will be introduced to language such as augend (first number in an addition problem), addend (the number added to the augend), and the equal sign. Using math counter chips and a Simple Equation Recording sheet, children will learn how to write mathematical addition sentences. Once they have mastered their addition facts within 10, challenge them with sums up to 20!

Students will be able to independently write a simple addition equation from a word problem.

(10 minutes)
  • Begin by raising a discussion about addition.
  • Explain that at the beginning of the day, you were in the room, making you the augend, or the word used in math that means the first number in an addition problem.
  • Explain that your students are the addends, or the number that is added to the augend.
  • Write the augend (1) on the board, and put a plus sign next to it, explaining that you are going to add the addend.
  • Write the addend (number of students), and then put an equal sign next to it, explaining that the other side of the equal sign will be the sum, or the total of the addend and augend added together.
(10 minutes)
  • Drop a pile of markers onto a piece of paper. Make sure that some roll off the paper.
  • Tell your students that the markers on the paper will serve as the augend, while the numbers off the paper will be the addend.
  • Ask your students to identify the numbers that make up the augend and addend.
  • Write a number sentence on the board depicting this situation.
(10 minutes)
  • Repeat the marker scenario 5 more times, and have your students record the five simple equations on their Recording worksheet.
  • Drop 10 markers over a cup. Count the number of markers in the cup. Record this first number and a plus sign.
  • Count the markers not in the cup. Record this number, and write an equal sign and the sum of the markers dropped.
  • Alternatively, play the blue beans activity to create the same effect of two groups.
(10 minutes)
  • Give your students the Animal Addition Practice worksheet to complete.
  • Enrichment: Have students work with sums up to 20. Give opportunities to answer guided questions or create algebraic equations (missing addends).
  • Support: Only work with game pieces that will add to sums of 5 or 10. Encourage students to use a number line for correctly writing numbers and addition.
(10 minutes)
  • Walk around the room, checking that your students are completing the Animal Addition Practice worksheet accurately.
(10 minutes)
  • Instruct your students to fill out the Pattern Chart.
  • Ask your students what pattern they notice about the addend as the augend increases.

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