In the first trimester of the school year, first grade students will work on the following skills:

• Learning the meaning of addition and subtraction
• Practicing addition and subtraction facts to 12
• Working with 5 and 10 on a ten frame
• Learning about pennies and nickels

You can help your child at home by having them practice these skills.  Knowing their basic addition and subtraction facts, especially the combinations to make 5 and 10, will make more complex math in the year and beyond much easier. Having children experience various situations where they would add or subtract is important for life.  Here are some example questions you might ask when working with your child:

• Your brother/sister put 3 forks on the table and I put 4 forks on the table.  How many forks are on the table?
• We have 5 cookies in this box.  You can have 2 cookies. How many cookies are still in the box?

Think of situations that involve adding as combining or joining.  In subtraction students explore comparing two item sets, not just “taking away”.  An example of this could be, “Brother/sister has 10 crayons, and I have 4. How many more crayons does brother/sister have?”  In this situation students can line up the objects and compare to see who has more.

Here are some other resources:

• Make a set of flashcards for addition or subtraction.
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