After spending quite a bit of time exploring the numbers 1-10 (through counting, number bonds, and subtraction), I am now focusing on the numbers 11-20. Though my daughter can recognize and name the numbers, she does not really understand what they represent (i.e. she does not yet understand *place value*). To help reinforce the fact that the numbers 11-20 are equivalent to 10 + ____, I’ve created some fun printable pages to model these numbers using ten frames. **Building the numbers 11-20** using various hands-on manipulatives, as well as these ten frame pages has been tremendously helpful in increasing her number sense and building a foundation to understand place value.

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## Building the Numbers 11-20:

There are a couple of different ways we modeled the numbers 11-20. First, we built the numbers using base ten blocks.

At first, I just gave her a large pile of unit blocks and had her count them one by one. Then we talked about how ten blocks can be put together to make a ten. I then had her practice counting by **forming groups of ten** (or making a “ten” out of the units) and then **counting on**.

She then began to notice that each number between 11-20 can be formed by using a ten + the correct number of unit blocks.

We then did a similar exploration with **pennies and dimes**. Money makes a fabulous math manipulative! We used the ten frame pages to count out pennies, and I reminded her that **ten pennies is equal to one dime**.

Again, she was able to see that the numbers 11-20 are made up of 1 ten and ____ units.

Then, she used do-a-dot markers to show the numbers 11-20 on her worksheets. I made sure she used **two different colors** (one for the “ten” and one for the “units”). This way, when she was finished, she was able to see all the numbers together, made up of 1 ten and the increasing number of units.

We also practiced **writing out the number words**, which gave her some handwriting and vocabulary practice.

These pages are great to **hang on the wall** as a helpful visual so that kids can use them as a reference when they are working with the numbers 11-20!

Building the numbers 11-20 in a **concrete and visual way** is the best way for kids to have a deep understanding of the numbers and builds a solid foundation for future learning and more abstract concepts.

Understanding these numbers as one ten plus __ units is essential for understanding place value in larger numbers, and also essential for students to begin adding and subtracting larger numbers.

Subtracting with regrouping (or borrowing) for example, makes no sense if kids do not understand that the tens place represents *tens* and not *units*. (By the way, I have also found that **teaching borrowing with dimes and pennies** is extremely effective).

**{Click HERE to go to my shop to get your copy of Building the Numbers 11-20 Worksheets!}**

**What are some ways you teach the numbers 11-20? Do you find kids have a hard time learning and truly understanding these numbers?**

Coombe Mill - Fiona says

Love your sheets, a great way to learn numbers and money

Let kids be kids says

This is a good, simple way to teach numbers and money.

Thanks for linking #LetKidsbeKids

Cabot says

Once again, perfect timing! My kindergartener just completed her chapter on numbers thru 40, but I don’t think she grasped the base ten concept. These worksheets will be perfect to use over the holiday break when she says “I’m bored.” And her third grade sister will also benefit if she “helps” the younger work on them. Thank you, thank you!

Bethany says

Oh that’s great! I love when my kids work together to learn or help each other 🙂 Have a great holiday break!

Jessica says

Just found your website! LOVE it!!! Yep, my 4 year old’s eyes glaze over when using or talking about the tens. He is having a really hard time grasping place value so I have been exploring a ton of different ways to show him visually. So right now I am doing all the supplemental activities I can find until one day it clicks and we can move on. Thank you so much for this brilliant idea!

Bethany says

Thanks so much Jessica! I hope this is helpful and fun for your little one! And just know that understanding place value is something that will likely take many conversations and much practice over time, so don’t worry if you have to continue coming back to it 🙂

Beth says

Love it!