Build a City {Addition Fluency & Strategies}


Teach addition facts and fluency strategies with this fun game.  To play you will need a hundreds chart, unifix cubes, dice, and number cards with dots.

Chose the type of dice you want to use based upon the skill level of the students you are working with.


Today, I chose a die that goes to twenty and two dice that go to 9, no dots on the dice because I wanted the children to use and become familiar with counting-up on the actual numbers using dot addition.

For this problem, the child touched the yellow die as she said 16, then count-up as she touched each dot and circle on the 8 and 7 to get to the answer of 31.  Then the player put a cube on the number 31 on the hundreds chart.


Now it is the next players turn.

Divide up the same color cubes equally.  That takes the competition out of the game.  Instead, you are building a city on the hundreds chart together.

Using a hundreds chart increases familiarity with the placement of numbers and the patterns on the hundreds chart because you end up discussing and finding patterns as you play.

You can also use comparative language as you play… the number 17 has 1 more cube than 18.  It creates a graph before your eyes!

Plus, manipulating the cubes is fun for the kids.  It keeps them engaged in the game.


This of course is an advanced level of play because of the dice we used today.  When working with young students, start with two regular, dotted dice and first work on finding the biggest number to count-up.

Stick with the dotted dice for a while.  Add more dice as the skill level grows.  When you get 3 or more dice going in a game, it is fun to start teaching your students to look for doubles and tens.  It is a way to teach the double and tens facts as you reinforce them.

Slowly switch out the dotted dice for numbered dice and dice with higher numbers as the skill level grows!


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