## Wednesday, October 11, 2017

### Subtraction Within 20 Fire Safety Month

by Learning Harbor ™

What do you want to be when you grow up? A chef, a dancer....a firefighter! We all have memories of being that kid who wanted desperately to ride in the big, red fire engine truck. Firefighters were our heroes and still are. Day in and day out, they come to our aid whenever we call. And every October, National Fire Prevention Week gives educators a chance to remind students about the role these important members of our community play in keeping us safe.

When kids focus on rote memorization of math facts, they don’t develop the ability to think critically, a necessary skill to learning math. But when kids are engaged in solving problems, they are developing the skills to reason, which in turn helps them to figure out how to do math. You can help them to understand the concepts of math by using active lessons involving simple subtraction equations.

Do your part to spread the word about fire safety and boost kids’ interest and confidence in doing math with a subtraction within 20 activity for use in 1st grade classrooms or wherever lessons surrounding subtraction within 20 are needed. Numbers are abstract concepts and take time to form in a child’s mind as having intrinsic value. The symbols used in mathematical equations are abstract as well. Their meaning can be elusive to younger elementary kids, especially since they alter when used in different contexts. Is it a dash or a minus sign? But a simple activity involving subtraction and firefighters can help promote greater understanding.

Here is Subtracting Within 20 Interactive PowerPoint that allows kids to practice subtraction within 20. This activity has fun sound effects and displays kids dressed as firefighters to help promote discussion about fire safety and fire prevention. It’s even self-correcting. Small change will get you a math lesson activity that can be used over and over again in your quest to teach kids math. Don’t let subtraction within 20 leave the kids in your classroom confused.