Although I teach second grade, I still have some kids who really need some basic number sense! These are the kids who still don't automatically "count on" when adding two numbers together, or determining the sum of two dice. They still count the dots! These kids need more "hands on" opportunity to get to know these numbers inside out!
I absolutely LOVE Cuisenaire Rods for helping children develop their number sense. I posted about them a while ago with THIS POST about using Cuisenaire Rods to practice math facts and fact families. I've got some kids who need to back up even further and really need to get to know the individual numbers by using these manipulatives.
It's a good idea to give the children a couple of sessions for free explorations with the Cuisenaire Rods. They'll catch on that the smallest cubes are always white, and that the longest ones are orange. Sooner or later, they'll figure out the "staircase". From the staircase, they'll figure out the value of each color, so it's a good idea to start them off by building a staircase from this point on.
I found an interesting video HERE that shows an activity that can be done with Cuisenaire Rods.
I've put together a few exercises with the Cuisenaire Rods to help build number sense, Click HERE or click the image to the right for a freebie on the number 5 (the yellow rod).
If you're interested in more activities for the other colored rods, click the image below , or click HERE!