We can never get too much practice at basic addition to 20. Using small snippets of time can be especially helpful for children who feel overwhelmed or stressed with sitting at a table attempting question after question. This activity is part of the ‘when you only have a minute‘ series, learning tasks that can be accomplished in one minute or less!
The top line of the free printable includes adding the numbers 1 to 5, whereas the bottom line contains addition to 20. If your child is only comfortable with the smaller numbers, ask them to only look at the top line.
To prepare for addition to 20
- Download this free Addition to 20 printable and print off pages on either colour or white copy paper or card stock.
- Cut on the dotted lines to create one square hole and 10 flaps (I used a Stanley knife/box cutter).
- Fold on the grey lines and glue the main page into a pocket for sliding the number strips into.
- Cut the number strip pages in half. You may need to trim the tops so they’ll slide freely into the pocket.
Slide the preferred number strip into the pocket (numbers 1-10 are provided). Each number should line up to the holes you’ve cut. Children then add the main number to the number written on the flap. They decide what the answer should be and then open the flap to check or self-correct.
If the flaps don’t want to sit flat, add a tiny bit of blu-tac under the flap. After sliding the numbers into the envelope, push down on each flap so the blu-tac will attach itself and keep the flap closed until a child is ready to open it.
This addition to 20 activity is fine to do independently but it’s more fun for pairs of children to work together.
To make it easier:
- ask your child to just do the top row (or just do 2 or 3 problems).
- only use the number strips 1-5.
- give them counters/manipulatives to help with the addition.
To make it harder:
- encourage them to attempt all 10 equations.
- if they’re used to using counters, ask them to use fingers, and if they’re using fingers ask them to do it mentally.
- add a speed element where they attempt to complete the activity more quickly (personally, I do not like attaching speed requirements to maths so I wouldn’t do it unless particular children were keen on it).
- cover the given number strips with plain coloured sticky dots then write a new series of numbers and their answers, starting with 11-20. Each child could create one number strip to share with the class.
Did you download it yet? If not, you can download it here!
More numbers to 20?
If some of your kids need to reinforce their knowledge of numbers to 20 you might find this Count and Write Numbers to 20 pack helpful. It’s one of my best sellers and contains original artwork and rhymes for number formation.
I hope your kids get lots of use out of this Addition to 20 printable and wish you happy teaching and learning!