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DIY Number Sense Practice Twisters

Nicole Sanchez on

Your students will love making two, three or four digit numbers with these number twisters. They're super easy to make and don't require a lot of materials. What I like most about them is that they can be used in so many ways to practice place value and number sense skills. They're great for math instruction, number building practice, math centers or can be used for independent practice. They can also be sent home with students to use for extra practice with their parents. 

Understanding Place Value
After learning single digits, students will begin to put digits together to form two and three digit numbers. Students may be able to easily memorize the names of the numbers, but they may not fully understand the value of each digit in the number. For example, they may be able to identify the number 25, but they may not understand that the 2 represents 2 tens, and the 5 represents 5 ones, and when placed together they represent a total of 25. Place value can be a tricky concept for young learners to understand. These number twisters help students separate each digit in the number into it's owl column. This helps them to better understand the concept of place value. It's a great way to introduce the concept of place value and practice reading longer, multi-digit numbers. 

Materials Needed
Paper or foam cups and a permanent marker

Instructions
1. Write the numbers 0-9 around two, three or four cups. 
2. Stack the cups together.
3. Twist the cups to make and read different numbers.

Activity Extension Ideas
You can easily extend this activity by reading numbers and having students make them. They could also practice writing out the numbers that they make with the cups. They could also make a list of numbers they make and compare them with greater than or less than signs.

Happy teaching, 
Nicole Sanchez