Contact Us   Home



  s  Excel Math Blog    
AnsMar Publishers, Inc.
12150 Tech Center Drive
Poway, CA 92064-7102
Toll Free: 866-866-7026
San Diego: 858-513-7900
Fax: 858-513-2764





Excel Math Blog

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Falling for Math: Ten Frame Activities

jumping in leaves

Jumping in a pile of leaves is a fun way to spend a fall afternoon.

Your students may not be jumping for joy about math lessons, but here a few ways to bring the excitement of fall into the math classroom.

Use these Excel Math Ten Frame Pumpkin cards to help your students identify and add numbers and begin to understand base ten. Or use them as flashcards. Print a set for each pair of students.

Hold up a card and have students tell you the number of white or orange pumpkins. Then have them write the numbers. 

Remind them to write neatly. Place several cards on your whiteboard pen tray or tape them to a wall and let students put them in order from least to greatest white pumpkins. (Use removable tape.)

Do the same with students holding the cards while another student arranges the classmates in order. Have the students mix up, and let another student put them in order.

Mix the cards again and have another student arrange them in order from greatest to least orange pumpkins. For addition practice, let students write a number sentence for each pumpkin card. Here's one for the second card shown on the right:

3 + 7 = 10 or 10 = 3 + 7

Ask the class if they see a pattern of pumpkins on the cards (5 on each row; a full card is 10).

Show the card with 3 white pumpkins on it and have your students tell you how many more pumpkins would be needed to make ten. Check the answer by having a student count the orange pumpkins. (It would take 7 more.)

Then have a student tell you the corresponding number sentence.

(3 plus 7 make 10, or 3 + 7 = 10 or 10 = 3 + 7)

base ten pumpkin cards

Excel Math Pumpkin Ten Frames

falling leaves

Have students shuffle their cards. Let each student take one card from her pile.

Have the students add the pumpkins to find the total.

Then have them create a word problem for that number sentence.

For example, "Staci had 3 pumpkins and her friend's mom grew seven pumpkins. How many pumpkins did they have together?"

Let us know how you use Ten Frames to help your students do math. Leave a comment in the box below.

Teachers and parents call us regularly to tell us about the exciting results they get with Excel Math.

Our proven lessons teach students foundational math concepts, but they don't stop there!

The unique spiraling system and spaced repetition helps children build confidence in their math skills and retain the concepts they learn  for the long term.

Excel Math can even help students develop a love for math.

Let your students bring in some fall leaves (or cut out tissue paper leaves if you have students who are allergic to the real ones). Give each student a piece of wax paper. Have the student use permanent marker to draw a ten frame on the paper and print his name on it. Have the student arrange several leaves on the ten frame and place another piece of wax paper on top.

Secure the papers and leaves with paper clips, take them to another room and have an adult iron the wax paper so the leaves are sealed inside. Let the student cut leaf patterns from paper and use the paper leaves to fill the ten frame and write a number sentences for that ten frame. Then have the students trade ten frames with a partner, add more leaves and write a new number sentence.

For over 35 years, the Excel Math lessons have been proven to develop higher-order thinking skills, build proficiency, and produce confidence in students of all ages and abilities.

Excel Math was written to give teachers the tools they need to help students develop a strong foundation in math.

Read more about Excel Math and its systematic spiraling process at

Do you have some favorite fall activities for teaching your students math concepts?

Leave a comment in the box below.

three leaves

New to Excel Math? Preview elementary math lessons that really work for Kindergarten through Sixth Grade on our website: Also find math resources for teachers, parents and students and walk through the curriculum at

Download sample lessons from our new Common Core Teacher Editions at

You might also like these articles:

Learn about Excel Math Summer School.

Leave a Comment

foxyform Order Now



Copyright © 2015 AnsMar Publishers, Inc. • 1-866-866-7026