Lesson 6

Contemos y actuemos historias

Lesson Purpose

The purpose of this lesson is for students to tell and act out addition and subtraction stories.

Lesson Narrative

In previous lessons, students demonstrated the actions of addition and subtraction with objects and counted to find the total or difference. This lesson introduces students to addition and subtraction in the context of a story, which will be explored throughout this section. The pictures and stories are about students playing at recess, which allows students to relate to and act out the stories directly and helps them understand the connection between what they act out and what happens in the story (MP2).

Because the focus of this activity is on making sense of the actions in the stories, there are no questions included. Questionless story problems encourage students to think about the context and the action in the story without feeling pressure or rushed to solve the problem.

Students may need to hear a story read aloud multiple times to remember what is happening in the story. While students may not be able to read the words in the story, it is important to have the story displayed for students to see so that students can begin to refer back to the problem when they recognize some of the numbers or words. Consider working on recognizing some common words in stories (many, more, how, now, etc.) during other parts of the day.

In this lesson and throughout the section, the teacher demonstrates writing expressions to represent the action in story problems. The teacher continues to use the language of “4 y 3” // “4 and 3” and “7 quitando 5” // “7 take away 5” and also reads expressions as “4 más 3” // “4 plus 3” and “7 menos 2” // “7 minus 2.”

  • Engagement
  • MLR8

Learning Goals

Teacher Facing

  • Act out a story.
  • Tell a story based on a picture.

Student Facing

  • Contemos y actuemos historias.

Required Materials

Materials to Gather

Materials to Copy

  • Number Mat 1–5

Required Preparation

Activity 3:

  • Each group of 2 needs 10 connecting cubes.
  • Gather materials from: 
    • 5-frames, Stages 1 and 2
    • Build Shapes, Stages 1 and 2
    • Counting Collections, Stage 1

CCSS Standards


Building Towards

Lesson Timeline

Warm-up 10 min
Activity 1 10 min
Activity 2 15 min
Activity 3 20 min
Lesson Synthesis 5 min
Cool-down 0 min

Teacher Reflection Questions

As students worked in their small groups today, whose ideas were heard, valued, and accepted? How can you adjust the group structure tomorrow to ensure each student’s ideas are a part of the collective learning?

Print Formatted Materials

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Student Task Statements pdf docx
Lesson Cover Page pdf docx
Teacher Guide Log In
Teacher Presentation Materials pdf docx
Blackline Masters zip