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Monday, February 23, 2015

Using Number Lines

Using number lines in the math classroom can help your students visualize math concepts and learn some new problem-solving techniques.

Here's a simple number line showing the numbers 0 to 20 from Excel Math.

 Draw this number line on your white board or post it on your wall. Also use masking tape to create this number line on your class floor.

 Your students can stand on a life-size number line to show greater than and less than. Choose a number and ask a student to stand on it on the floor number line. Have another student circle the number on the white board. While the first student remain on his number, choose a new number and ask a second student to stand on it. Have the remaining students show you which number is smaller by using their fingers to make a "greater than" or "less than" sign. (Have them form a peace sign or V with two fingers and then turn it sideways so the point of the V points to the smaller number.) If your students are learning fractions, next use the half inch number line shown at right. Excel Math Fractions on a number line

 Have another student show the problem on the white board number line as shown with the green arrows above. You can also show negative numbers on the number line. Here they are in red. Let your students write and solve more number line math problems as they have time. Excel Math Number Line showing positive and negative numbers
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