Monday, March 26, 2012

Vegetable Subtraction

I bought the book Up, Down, and Around last week from the book fair and really wanted to use it in a lesson this week so I put together a subtraction lesson using veggies.

I had students use their arms to act out up, down, and around as we read the story.

We acted out subtraction story problems using a big brown basket and veggies. I had some printer issues so I had to use black and white veggies instead of color ones.

The farmer picked different numbers of veggies and placed them in his basket. Then we all used our arms to pretend to carry a big heavy basket and drop some. Each time different numbers of veggies would fall out.
 I wanted to focus on groups being separated from the whole rather than being taken totally away. Some kids get confused when they "x" out objects or think that subtraction always means "take away." We focused this lesson on part of the group being separated from the whole. We acted word problems out many times to give everyone a chance to participate and to make sure students had a good understanding of the subtraction process.

Then we acted out more story problems using our vegetable cut-outs. Once students have a good bit of  experience with subtraction story problems, have them create their own problems to act out.

After we did several different subtraction problems for practice and discussion, I had students place all 8 of the veggies in their basket. Then they drew a playing card to determine how many veggies fell out of their basket.

Students glued their veggies down. Then we worked together to talk to their story problem and to fill in the blanks at the bottom of the page.

To make the veggies: I gave students colored squares and rectangles and had them clip all 4 corners and round. After all of their veggies were cut, we acted out story problems using them.

Depending on the level of your class, you could let students pick their own veggies and use number generators to determine the number of veggies they start with. For management purposes, I made these decisions for the students. I have them the same number of each vegetable and 8 total. 

Potato 5 X 3
Carrot 1 1/2 X 6
Corn 2 1/2 X 6
Beans4 X 1
Tomato 3 X 3
Background 12 X 18

Remember to ask lots of questions throughout this process and always have students explain their thinking. You can ask how many are in each group, which group has more, which group has less, how many more, etc.

Click here to download the words for the activity.

Click here to download the veggie pictures for acting out the problems.


Angela said...

That is such a cute lesson!

The Daily Alphabet

School Sparks Renee said...

Mrs. Larremore, I love your idea of subtraction being not just taking totally away but also separating from the group. Getting children to act out the story problems must have been fun for everyone. Renee

Mrs. Clancy said...

I love this I am definitely going to get this book and do the lesson! The problem pictures came out beautiful! Thanks! Melissa

Sarah Cooley said...

LOVE it!

bjudge said...

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Kelly Tillotson said...

this is adorable and im definitely going to use this in a "vegetable unit" im planning :) thanks!!!!

Shelly said...

Love it! Thanks for sharing.