Crafts,  Cricut Crafts,  Teaching Tools

Addition Station: Math Manipulative for Elementary Students

A great way to engage students with hands-on learning in the essential skill of addition.

You can take the teacher out of the classroom…but I am always a teacher! When my teacher friends asked me to make a craft for their math students, I jumped at the chance. Plus, I got to use my laminator, which was a big bonus! It’s been too long, my friend.

Teaching students math skills in multiple ways is so important when solidifying key concepts. Using precut wooden discs and my Cricut Maker made this a fast and fun project.

The tool is great because it illustrates for students the idea of regrouping (“carrying,” anyone??) and they physically move the number in the ones place to the next column over. This in turn allows students to see that they are really adding three numbers together when regrouping, instead of two.

This is a simple craft that can be completed within an hour.

You will need…

  • Cardstock (I used two colors)
  • Wooden discs (you can cut them from your Michaels). The quantity you will want depends on how many you are making, you likely want at least two of each digit per set.
  • Vinyl
  • Transfer tape
  • Weeding tool
  • What to do…

    • Set up your design in Cricut Design Space. You can use my free svg Cricut template (just send me a message), or create your own to suit your own needs. I am focusing on two digit plus two digit addition here, but you could easily expand your template and make it landscape to include more digits.
    • Set your template to score around the outside (if desired – I needed my final template to be approx 8.5 x 11 so that it would fit in my laminator), and cut the circle-shaped holes and the tube for the number circle to follow. Remove from machine and punch out holes. What you are left with will be your addition station template.

    • Cut out plus sign and line on Cricut, and title if desired out of a different color cardstock.
    • Cut out digits 0-9 on your Cricut, or use stickers. I recommend at least two of each number per set. Apply them to your wood discs. Seal with ModPodge if desired (recommended for stickers).
    • Laminate your cardstock template with the holes. I chose to not cut out the holes after I ran it through the laminator, as I didn’t want to compromise the laminating and have it peel.
    • Share your creation with your teacher and parent friends! Great for home, centers, or small group instruction.

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