Students will

Learn why numbers are an important part of everyday life.

Provide examples of daily uses of numbers.

ProblemSolving: Math, Episode 1 video

Writing paper

Pencils and erasers

Computer with Internet access (optional)

Talk about the different ways we use numbers in our everyday lives. What are some uses of numbers? Why are numbers important? A good way to introduce this topic is to watch ProblemSolving: Math, Episode 1 with the class.

Have students walk around the classroom for 5 to 10 minutes and ask them to point out examples of numbers they find in the room. Direct them to some less obvious ways numbers are used, such as on a clock or the number of paintbrushes in a jar, cubbies, or windows in the classroom.

Have students return to their desks and ask them these questions: Where do you see numbers? What are the numbers doing there? Are they measuring something, telling time, or representing a group?

After sharing what they found, ask students to imagine a world without numbers. What would it be like? How would things be different? How would school and their classroom be different? Give students a few minutes to think and share their thoughts with the class. Talk about the things that students do in a day. What things would be harder to do without numbers? How do numbers help them know when to go to school? How do numbers help them know how many plates to put on the dinner table? How do numbers help us know where to stand in a line? Help students come up with examples of ways they rely on numbers everyday.

Have students draw a picture showing an example of a time they have used numbers. Give them some examples: standing first or last in line, dividing candy among friends, or having a doctor measure their height. All of these represent important uses of numbers in everyday life. More advanced students could write words or a sentence or two explaining their drawing.

When the drawings are complete, ask volunteers to share their work with the class. Display the drawings in the classroom so that students are reminded of the importance of numbers in their everyday lives.
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Use the following threepoint rubric to evaluate students' work during this lesson.

Three points: Students were highly engaged in class discussions; were well behaved and on task while searching for examples of numbers in the classroom; and drew unique and colorful pictures that clearly identified an example of a way they use numbers in their everyday lives.

Two points: Students participated in class discussions; were reasonably well behaved and generally on task while searching for examples of numbers in the classroom; and drew somewhat unique and colorful pictures that generally identified an example of a way they use numbers in their everyday lives.

One point: Students participated minimally in class discussions; were unable to stay on task while searching for examples of numbers in the classroom; and drew incomplete or inaccurate pictures that did not identify an example of a way they use numbers in their everyday lives.
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cardinal number
Definition : A number such as 3, 11, or 412 used in counting to indicate quantity but not order
Context : "One, two three..." These are cardinal numbers: You just give a number to each person, and count how many.
count
Definition : To name or list the units of a group or collection one by one in order to determine a total
Context : Let's count the elephants in these two groups.
measure
Definition : To determine the dimensions, quantity, or capacity of something
Context : Numbers help us measure the right amount of time to bake bread.
numeral
Definition : A symbol or mark used to represent a number
Context : Numbers and the numerals representing them help us make sense of things in the world.
ordinal number
Definition : A number indicating position in a series or order
Context : "First" and "second" are ordinal numbers, which you use when you want to talk about the order of people or things.
unit
Definition : An individual, group, structure, or other entity regarded as a whole
Context : An apple, a cantaloupe, a pizza, a tomato?you can think of any of these as a unit because each is one whole, single thing.
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Midcontinent Research for Education and Learning (McREL)
McREL's Content Knowledge: A Compendium of Standards and Benchmarks for K12 Education addresses 14 content areas. To view the standards and benchmarks, visithttp://www.mcrel.org/compendium/browse.asp
This lesson plan addresses the following national standards:

Mathematics: Understands and applies basic and advanced properties of the concepts of numbers; Understands and applies basic and advanced properties of the concepts of measurement; Understands the general nature and uses of mathematics
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) has developed national standards to provide guidelines for teaching mathematics. To view the standards online, go tohttp://standards.nctm.org/.
This lesson plan addresses the following national standards:

Number and Operations: Understands numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among numbers, and number systems

Measurement: Understand measurable attributes of objects and the units, systems, and processes of measurement
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