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Building Blocks of Math: Foundations

The Building Blocks of Math Educator Section includes tools as well as ready-to-use classroom materials. Educators can see how the Common Core State Mathematics Standards and the Common Core State Standards for Mathematical Practice align with the Building Blocks of Math books, organized by the grade level(s) they teach. In addition, educators will have access to reading resources such as discussion guides and comprehension checks. Because this series supports a conceptual understanding of mathematics, the classroom activities focus on a variety of strategies. These activities can be used to support students’ number sense understanding, flexibility with numbers, and overall confidence with math. Finally, the Educators Section also includes engaging lessons, centered around standards, with built-in differentiation options to support all learners as they continue to explore this content.

Building Blocks of Math Standards Alignment:

Use this section to view how the Common Core State Standards align to the Building Blocks of Math series.

Reading Resources

Each book in the Building Blocks of Math series comes with a Discussion Guide as well as a Comprehension Check! Each Discussion Guide includes 10 questions and is intended to be used during or after reading the text to help students better understand the content. Potential answers are also included. Each Comprehension Check also includes 10 questions and comes with an Answer Key. The Comprehension Check is intended to be used after reading and is a great assessment option.

Classroom Activities

In these activities, students will demonstrate their ability to use a variety of strategies to mentally solve problems using addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division. Understanding the way these strategies work helps build students’ number sense, flexibility with numbers, and confidence in manipulating numbers in a variety of ways. Students will learn, review, and practice using four strategies before showing their strategy skills on a mini quiz.

Addition Strategy Spotlight

This activity spotlights the finding tens, friendly numbers, doubles, and near-doubles strategies.

Subtraction Strategy Spotlight

This activity spotlights the counting back, finding tens, number lines, and near-doubles strategies.

Multiplication Strategy Spotlight

This activity spotlights the repeated addition, skip counting, doubles, and decomposing with place value strategies.

Division Strategy Spotlight

This activity spotlights the repeated subtraction, number lines, using multiplication, and halving strategies.

Lesson Plans

World Book has created lesson plans that can be used to help deepen students’ understanding of the Building Blocks of Math concepts. These full lesson plans are aligned to standards, include assessment options, describe possible differentiation considerations, and include a variety of ways for students to stay engaged in their learning. Many materials are included as quick and easy downloads for your convenience.

Introduction to Equivalent Fractions

In this differentiated lesson, students will explore the ideas of fractional equivalence by using manipulatives, such as fraction strips, to build their conceptual understanding of fractions. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate with their peers in order to compare fractions, generate equivalent fractions, and develop strategies. Here, students will use pattern finding, structure, and repeated reasoning to extend their thinking and deepen their understanding of fractional equivalence.

Operation Round Up

This lesson is designed for students in grades 3-5 but includes standards for grades 1-5 because it focuses on building students’ foundational and conceptual knowledge of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. Students will collaborate to explore a mathematical operation, considering any related strategies, connections to other mathematical operations and concepts, and examples of the operation in the real world. Students will also have opportunities to reflect on and respond to their peers’ writing before independently demonstrating their understanding.