Ten in the Bed
In this unit students will experience skip counting in twos and fives based on the common nursery rhyme “Ten in the Bed”.
skip count to work out how many fingers or toes for a given group of people
solve number problems up to ten using equipment and role play
solve subtraction problems using fingers and quinary strategies and other equipment
Groupings with and within ten and basic addition facts to ten are key pieces of knowledge which students must have to operate effectively with larger numbers. In the Number Framework, these are the essential precursors to moving from counting strategies to additive strategies.
There are many opportunities in the classroom and in the wider environment for students to explore the connections between numbers. In this unit the starting point is a common rhyme – 10 in the bed.
Associated Achievement Objective
English - Listening, Reading, and Viewing - Processes and strategies: uses sources of information and prior knowledge to make sense of a range of texts.
We introduce the session by reading the nursery rhyme ‘There are Ten In the Bed’
- Encourage students to start with ten fingers on their hands to match how many are in the bed as the story is being read. Further questions can be asked like 5 + ? = 10? Reverse the problem and ask students 10 – 5 = ??
- Other equipment can be used along side the reading of the story to illustrate what is happening for example, use teddy counters and an ice cream container turned upside down. All the teddy counters could be placed on top of the container and as each teddy ‘falls out’ this can be role played with the counters falling off the top of the container. Ten frames and counters could be used in a similar way to reinforce the quinary pattern as shown below.
- Ask predictive questions of students, If one more falls out, how many will be left in the bed? Show me on your fingers. How many more need to fall out so that there will be 5 in the bed?
- Show number sentences as
5 + ? = 8
5 + ? = 9 etc
- Role play and being able to ‘Act it Out’ is a problem solving strategy that lends itself nicely to this context. Using ten students to lay on a rug or mat and then rolling off could run along side the telling of the nursery rhyme.
- Complete the nursery rhyme encouraging students to show the correct number of people left in the bed on their fingers, students should be encouraged to join in with the chant due to its catchy repetition.
Over the next 2 to 3 days the following types of activities could be explored using this nursery rhyme. It would be important to reread the nursery rhyme several times over the following days and challenge students’ thinking by asking more complex questions.
- Focus on counting in two’s
Begin the session by using a hundreds board and asking students to whisper the first number and say the even number in a big voice, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 … the even numbers on the hundreds board can be flipped as they are shouted to reinforce the written numeral.
Body percussion could be included to emphasis the rhythm and pattern e.g (1) pat legs, (2) clap hands, (3) pat legs, (4) clap hands etc….
A discussion about odd and even numbers may be needed here. The teacher can record the sequence of numbers that are said in a loud voice and say that they have a special name and that they are called even numbers. You may like to ask further Why do you think they have been given that name? Odd numbers can be talked about in the same way.
Once a sequence of numbers has been recorded students can be asked to think about which number they think will come next in the sequence.
It’s important to start with numbers at different starting points for example start counting at 4 or 9.
Reread the nursery rhyme stopping at different points and ask the following sorts of questions.
How many eyes are in the bed now?
How many hands?
How many feet?
Practice counting in twos without having to say the numbers in between.
If 5 people are left in the bed how many ears are there?
This can be recorded using words and symbols for example
5 lots of eyes = 10 eyes
There are many possibilities for displaying this information pictorially, for example drawing sets of eyes and posing the question How many eyes are there altogether? Outlines of the students’ feet could be traced around and displayed:
How many feet are left in the bed?
If 6 people have already fallen out of the bed how many feet are left in the bed?
- Counting in Fives
Counting in fives can be explored in similar ways described in the counting in twos activities above. Body percussion can be used to whisper, whisper, whisper, whisper then shout the number 1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,10 … - the use of sasa arm movements is a fun way of counting in fives
Hundreds boards can be used as a tool also to help students to count in 5’s as they see the next number in the sequence being flipped over.
The five nature of the slavonic abacus is also a useful piece of equipment to help students to see something concrete as they practice counting.
The students’ own fingers and toes are perfect for exploring and counting in fives. Similar sorts of questions can be asked. If there are 10 people in the bed, how many fingers are there altogether? Ask students how might we work this out. We could count each finger, but can you think of a faster way to work out how many fingers there are altogether?
Play a game of ‘How many fingers in the bed’ The teacher or selected student calls out a number from one to 10 and say there are ? people in the bed Students organise themselves into groups of that many people. They then have to work out how many fingers there are altogether. The same game could be explored for how many toes.
An extension of this game would be to ask how many fingers and toes are there in the bed.
- Focus on Facts to Ten
The context of 10 in the bed allows for lots of exploration around all the combinations that make 10. This is a key piece of knowledge needed for students to move from the Advanced Counting stage to the Early Additive Part Whole stage.
Other activities to support students’ knowledge of building facts to ten can be accessed through the links below.
Using Tens Frames to build addition and subtraction facts to Ten.
Using Tens Frames to describe patterns to Ten.
Buttons and Frames.
Buttons to Ten.
- Focus on Subtraction
’There are 10 in the bed and the little one said roll over’ Model how the number sentence would be recorded. 10 – 1 = 9. Discuss what the – sign means, write the words along side the symbol take away (‘fell out’) continue recording the number sequences in order for students to look at the patterns and predict how many will be left. Using fingers and role-play along side is worthwhile to promote understanding.
Give students 10 counters (teddy counters would be great) and an ice cream container or something similar to screen the teddy bears. Place the teddy bears under the ice-cream container. One person in the pair closes their eyes while the other takes some teddy pairs from under the ice cream container. The partner shows how many teddies they took. They have to work out how many teddies are left in the bed.
- The rhyme could be extended to say ‘there are 20 in the bed and the little one said…’ to extend the number sequence being explored.