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Monday, July 7, 2014

Number Bonds in kindergarten

 When I first saw number bonds floating around the internet, I did not give them much thought or even a second glance. Firstly, they weren't much to look at. Secondly, I did not understand the value of using them.  It was only after I attended the Conference on Common Core Standards, did I learn that these can be an important tool for student learning.

When using number bonds, it is recommended that you use these three forms of instruction to increase students conceptual knowledge of the concept. These are shown below:
I used number bonds in my classroom to show students the relationship of a part and a part making a whole as in addition. When students are ready, you can vary your activities so that students have a whole and one part requiring them to find a missing part.

Here is an introductory video I used in my class before we practiced as a class.

Notice that the teacher uses kid friendly language in the introduction, "3 and 5 make 8."  Later, you can teach students this as a number sentence, "3+5=8." This is so you are moving gradually to the abstract increasing student understanding.

When using number bond work mats, the orientation does not matter.  Most importantly, students need to understand the part, part to whole relationship. Therefore you should vary the orientation of your work mats so students understand that this does not change the relationship.  See examples below.
Heart Number Bond Work Mat 1
I made these prettier number bond work mats.
Feel free to use any of these you would like!

Heart Number Bond Work Mat 2

Heart Number Bond Work Mat 3

Heart Number Bond Work Mat 4

Flower Number Bond Work Mat
Can be used in any orientation!

or use
Can be used in any orientation!
Plain Circle Number Bond
To create a work mat like the example, print two copies of the number bonds on two different colored pieces of card stock.  Glue to a 12 x 18 sheet of construction paper and laminate.

You can duplicate these number bond cards and place them in a center.  Student will the use manipulatives to match the card and draw a picture to match the card.  You can differentiate the activity by adding a step.   Students who are ready, can write number sentences using the number bonds.

Free Number Bond Cards

Classroom Freebies Manic Monday


  1. Love this post! Found you on Classroom Freebies. Number bonds are great! The Math Coach's corner blog has a lot about number bonds and how to use number bracelets to practice them. They would go well with your centers!

    The Math Maniac

  2. Thank you for these resources! I am using the mats and cards tomorrow! I loathe teaching number bonds from our workbooks, but these will be fantastic as we dive into hands-on learning!