Tap To Tens and Ones

Pam Maloney

Lesson Goals

Students will be able to demonstrate their knowledge of how many tens and ones are in each teen number.

Students will “tap out” demonstrating their knowledge of how many tens and ones are in the numbers 11-19.


Each student will have 2 instruments. One will have a loud or deep sound to represent the “ten”. The other will be a softer or not as deep sound. For this lesson I am using a small plastic waste can (for ten) and 2 drumsticks (ones).


I. Each student will have a waste can and 2 drumsticks. The waste can will be tapped once by the drumstick to represent a ten in a number. The drumstick will be tapped on the table the correct number to represent the ones. Practice: teacher calls out 10 and students should hit the “drum”. Teacher calls out 2 and students tap the drumstick 2 times in unison. Continue to practice so that students know which instrument to tap and do it in unison. (This will be done by teacher giving a “lead in” ready – go and students will tap their instruments at same time).
2. Once students have mastered step one, the teacher will then call out a teen number (ex. 13) the students in unison say 10 (as they tap the drum) and 1,2,3 (tapping the table). Continue with practice until students are proficient with this procedure.
3. Once students have mastered step 2, the teacher will add the rhyme. “ten, ten do it again, what is 10 and 3? Students will repeat the rhyme and then say 10 as they tap their drum and count 1,2,3 as they tap the table. (” 10, 1,2,3″) As the students become more proficient, the teacher will ask them to count on by tapping and saying ten, then tapping the table saying 11, 12, 13 for a counting on strategy.
4. Once students have mastered step 3, the teacher will allow a student to become the teacher and say rhyme and call out the number for the class.

Differentiation Approaches

This lesson can be adapted by having one student be in charge of tapping for the “ten number” and a second student tapping for the “ones number”.


Students will be assessed through observation by the teacher.

Follow Up and Extension Ideas

The next step (lesson) would have the children read from a board the number 10 and the ones. Introducing all the ways to represent tens and ones. This would be the actual number 10 + 3 or a ten frame of 10 and 3, a bundle of sticks together and then seperate ones. (any example of tens and ones).

Additional Details

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