Using Tens and Ones

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Mathematics, Numbers and Numerations

Grade 1- 3


Students learn about place value (tens and ones).


  1. Have students make bean sticks. Give each child 99 beans and 9 craft sticks. Have the children glue exactly 10 beans to each craft stick. Leave the remaining 9 beans loose. The craft sticks will represent tens. The loose beans will represent ones. Store the bean sticks and loose beans in a plastic storage bag.
  2. Introduce the concept of tens and ones. Have the children make various one- and two-digit numbers using the sticks and beans. For example, ask children to show you 9, show you 24, and show you 36.Go over the Using Tens and Ones activity sheet, which introduces the concept of tens and ones.
  3. Discuss how the single crayons stand for one and the box of crayons stands for ten. Model how to count and record the tens and ones.


  • beans
  • craft sticks
  • glue
  • plastic storage bags
  • Using Tens and Ones activity sheet

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