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Train Day

Math Lesson
for Train Day

The students will write number sentences.




  1. Pass out the manipulatives, the All Aboard the Math Train Worksheet, and one train cut-out to each student.

  2. Work together as a class to make addition number sentences for a number such as 4.  Tell the students their manipulative (beans, counting bears, etc.) are going to climb aboard Train #4.  Each train has 3 cars for the students to divide the manipulatives onto. The students may take 4 counters and place them on the train cars to make equations using either 2 or three addends.   For example, one student may place 1 counter on the first car and 3 on the second car making the equation "1+3=4."  Another student may place 1 counter on the first car, 2 on the second and 1 on the third making the equation "1+2+1=4."  

  3. Have the students share how they placed their counters.  Record the number sentences on the chalk board.  Discuss the term "addend" if needed.  Point out the wide variety of ways for reaching the number 4.

  4. Have the students complete the All Aboard the Math Train Worksheet.  This can be done individually, in pairs, or as a whole class, depending on the age of the students.


Other Lesson Ideas

  1. Write story problems about trains that have collected passengers, as well as had passengers disembark.  These will include both addition and subtraction problems.

  2. Divide the students into groups of 4 or 5.  Give them different colors of rectangular construction paper to pose as train cars.  Have the students form trains which contain patterns in the way the colors of the cars are arranged.

  3. Have a lesson in telling time using a train schedule as a basis.  For example, if a train leaves the station at 2:00 and arrives at its destination 4 hours later, what time will it be?

  4. Have a money lesson using train ticket prices as a starting point.



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