Kindergarten addition: reinforce addition skills with these easy print and prep activities. these math centers use hands-on and engaging games and materials to learn to add.
Addition is an important and fundamental math skill that students have to master before moving on to more complex concepts. I had a lot of fun, hands-on kindergarten addition centers to help students understand how it works and to make it engaging for them to practice.
Here is an overview of some of the things that we did in our classroom:
Write and Swipe Cards
We taught our students to use different strategies when they are solving addition sentences. These write and swipe cards were a perfect way to practice using a picture or ten frame when finding an answer.
I modeled how to use these strategies with students before they started. I wanted to make sure that they understand how this strategy works too- not just how to do it.
Our students always like to use the white board markers and they are reusable so they can be put out again and again throughout the school year to keep practicing these skills.
adding with a number line
Another fun way to work on addition is to use a number line with different math manipulatives.
Students rolled the dice, then added the two numbers together using the number line. Our students can use any of the different materials that they are interested in, and this makes it even more fun for them.
Changing out the materials with the season/theme/holiday is a great way to keep this activity fresh for them. I put this out during Easter, so I had eggs and bunnies for them to use.
They like being able to physically move something along the line and they understand the concept better if they have a connection to the movement.
using a whiteboard
I quickly set up this math provocation before our math centers. I just wanted a place to show students our adding sentences where they all could see what I was doing. Once I showed our students that they could use the whiteboard and the pompoms (I attached magnets to the back), they wanted to use it too!
They had a great time working on addition centers together and they were challenging each other to solve the math problems!
adding in the hive
Our students love to play games, and this addition work mat was a hit with them! Any time that they can play while learning a math concept is a win for me.
Kindergarten students are learning so much more when they are having fun and when they are engaged with the activities that they are doing.
To play this game, students rolled the dice and added those amounts into their hive. They then had to write the addition sentence to match.
This was another popular, hands-on center. Students had to solve the addition problem, then place the popcorn in the right container.
We put this out the first day, and our students loved the popcorn and they were so excited to go to this center. Then while I was tidying I found actual popcorn containers and I knew I had to set out the center again using them!
Of course our students were really excited to use the popcorn to add the numbers, and it provided a great sensory experience when they were working. The smell and feel of the kernels was a great way to get students to come to this center.
This was a favourite out of all the centers that we did during our addition unit. I know that presenting materials is important for kindergarten, but this center really showed me that students can better understand a concept when they are excited by the materials presented to them.
my book of addition
At the end of our unit, we worked on our addition books. Students used different strategies to solve addition problems on each of the pages. This was a great way to assess their learning, and reteach where needed.
more kindergarten addition activities
I am always looking for ways to teach addition throughout the school year. It’s a concept that needs to be revisited, and practiced for students to get a good grasp on it.
If you need more ideas, you can check out some of these posts that have great ideas that you can use:
- Roll and Add
- Can You Fix It?
- Addition and Subtraction with a Number Line
- Adding 2 New Addition Centers
- Adding with Beads
- Adding and Subtracting with a Number Line
- Dice Math Centers
If you have questions about how I run kindergarten centers in my classroom, I wrote My Ultimate Guide to Kindergarten Centers that addresses the most common questions that I get asked.
All the printable activities i mention are available in my Easy Print and Prep Math Centers: Addition. It is available on its own, or you can get it in a bundle that has activities for each math strain to help you throughout the school year:
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