Recognizing more or less to 5

Recognizing more or less to 5

Recognizing more or less to 5

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Recognizing more or less to 5

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Students can recognize amounts to 5 by comparing different amounts to each other. By doing so they learn to indicate more and less.

Common core standard(s)



Discuss the idea of comparison with the students, explaining that when you have two numbers you can say that one or the other is more or less. Thit is useful to determine if you have enough of something, for example to see if you have enough cookies to share.


Count the animals out loud and point to them on the interactive whiteboard. Also do this with the ice cream cones. Ask the students to hold up the same amount of fingers.


Ask three students to come stand in front of the class and put them on the left hand side (from student's perspective). Choose five other students and have them stand on the right hand side. Count the group on the left out loud. Then count the group on the right out loud. Link to their knowledge of counting to 5. Which group has more children? The group on the right, because 5 comes after 3. Which group has less children? The group on the left, because 3 comes before 5. Practice this with blocks. Give every child 5 blocks. Ask the students to set down more or less blocks. Demonstrate this by dragging blocks on the interactive whiteboard. There are many possible variations.

Check that students understand the idea of more and less by asking the following questions:
Where do you see more than 3? How do you know?
Where do you see less than 3? How do you know?

Guided Practice

Students practice recognizing more or less by counting objects. First by comparing two amounts, and then comparing an amount with a number.


Check that students can compare amounts by asking them to count the objects and compare the numbers. Emphasize that it is useful to use their knowledge of counting to 5 to determine where the number fits in the sequence of counting.

Teaching Tip

Students who still have difficulty can be asked to practice by making groups of blocks to a maximum of 5. Students who are able to recognize amounts without counting can be encouraged to practice comparing amounts to 5 and later to 10.

Instruction materials


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