Students need a lot of addition and subtraction practice. This helps them develop the fact fluency they need as they move on to larger math problems. While flash cards have their place in the classroom, they aren’t the only way to practice. Here are some fun ways to practice addition and subtraction. Not only are these activities engaging, but they are low-prep to help save you time.
Ways to Practice Addition and Subtraction
Here are several ways to practice addition and subtraction. These include ideas for basic facts and larger math problems that require regrouping.
Math manipulatives keep students engaged and provide hands-on opportunities to make learning more concrete. They also provide an additional level of support for students who have not established fact fluency. Not sure which math manipulatives are right for your classroom? I’ve shared my favorites for the primary classroom here.
- Deck of Cards – Playing math games is not only fun, but they can also provide so many benefits. I recommend using a deck of cards because they are affordable and easy to find. The numbers in a deck of cards work so well for basic math fact practice. Check out my favorite card games that help students practice facts to 10.
- Dice – Kids love to play dice games, but some teachers shy away from them due to management issues and lack of time. When you combine dice games your students can play independently AND practice math skills at the same time, it’s a win-win situation for the classroom.
- Dominoes – Like dice and cards, dominoes are another great tool for addition and subtraction practice. Here are some engaging activities to put those manipulatives to work.
Try a Math Maze
If your students have a pretty solid grasp on math facts, it might be time to offer a challenge. These addition and subtraction math mazes are filled with math facts. They must follow the path of true math facts from start to finish.
Include Riddles and Jokes
What do you call a dog that likes bubble baths?
Do your kids get a kick out of riddles and jokes? Mine do! After solving 10 addition or subtraction problems, students use the key to solve the riddle or joke. These are available in 2-digit and 3-digit numbers, both with and without regrouping.
- 2-Digit by 1-Digit
- 2-Digit by 2-Digit
- 3-Digit by 1-Digit
- 3-Digit by 2-Digit
- 3-Digit by 3-Digit
- Addition and Subtraction Bundle
Another way to add instant engagement with addition and subtraction practice is to add a spinner. Students spin to create an addition or subtraction problem and then solve using various strategies. To save on copies, place the page in a dry erase pocket or sheet protector and students can use the page over and over again with different results. You can find these place value spinner activities here.
P.S. If you don’t have a spinner on hand, you can create your own with a paper clip and pencil.
Let Students Go Shopping
Do your students love to shop? Take them on a spending spree without leaving the classroom. This series of shop posters and task cards encourages students to find the total amount for various purchases.
You can find my shopping packs here:
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