4th Grade Math : Unit #4 - Numbers and Their Places! : Lesson #14

What is my value?

Objective: SWBAT recognize that in a multi-digit whole number, a digit in one place represents ten times what it represents in the place to its right.
Standards: 4.NBT.A.1 MP4 MP6 MP8
Subject(s): Math
60 minutes
1 Warm Up - 10 minutes

Material: 4.NBT.1_SRplace-value-chart.pdf

Interactive tool

Some of my students seem to have a difficult time understanding place value and number sense.  In this lesson I want to explore strategies they have already used to assist them with understanding.

 To start I invite students to the carpet to brainstorm what material can be used to build a house.   Several students say, wood, and other say they would use bricks. I want students to understand that they have to build a house in the same way they build numbers.  It is important for students to understand that they are actually building the number 1,000. 

I place a large place value chart on the board to demonstrate how the digit values change as they are moved around in large numbers? I write the number 3256 on the board, and ask students to tell me what number is in the hundreds place. (2) I enter the number two under the hundreds column, and write 200 on the board. I explain that the 2 represents two hundred instead of two because it is placed under the hundreds column. I write another number using the same number as before, however, I write 2356. I ask students what number is in the thousands place. (2) I enter the number two under the thousand place. I write 2000 on the board. I explain that the 2 represents two thousand because it is placed under the thousands. Can anyone explain what determines the value of a digit? Students explain that the value of the digit is determined by its place. Great Job!


Mathematical Practices:

 MP.4. Model with mathematics.

 MP.6. Attend to precision.

 MP. 8. Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.

2 Activity Break - 10 minutes

Material: 4.NBT.1_SRplace-value-chart.pdf  base10_tens_ones.doc

In this portion of the lesson, I ask students to grab a partner. I explain that I will call out a number, and they will represent that number using base-tens.  I say it is the same thing as building guys; you are going to actually see how numbers are build. 

To start, I demonstrate how to build 2,459 on the board.  First, I enter the number in the place value chart. As I write I explain the value of each digit. For instances, I say, I have 2 thousands, 4 hundreds, 5 tens, and 9 ones. Because my students are going to be using base-tens materials to build their numbers, I point to the material that correctly represents the value of each digit.  I repeat this using two more numbers just to make sure students understand what to do. I encourage students to refer back to the chart on the board to help them determine the value of digits. To help them become better thinkers I ask them to explain why and how numbers increase and decrease in value according to where they are placed on a value chart. Students explain that numbers grow in a 10 times a given number when moved one space to the left.

For struggling students, I encourage them to keep their place value chart handy to support their number. For instances, they can enter the number on the chart before they build it using the base-ten material. This will allow students to be more precise in their work. All students are actively engage in their learning. When their time is up, I ask student volunteers to share their learning experiences with the rest of the class.

3 Independent Showcase values - 20 minutes

Material: Students indpendent assessment.docx

In this portion of the lesson I want students to demonstrate what they have learned so far. Each student will explain the value of each digit in a given number.  I encourage students to use notes that are on the board to help them determine the value of each digit.  As students are working, I circle the room to check for understanding. I am careful not to interrupt students who appear to be working just fine.

But, I want to assist students who seem to struggle with answering the given questions. For instances, I may ask students to represent the value of certain digit using base-tens. Sometimes a visual explanation can help students determine the value a lot better than the number written in standard form.  I continue to circle the room assisting as needed. I use students’ work samples and explanation to determine if additional practice is needed.

Work Sample


What I Noticed!
Intervention and Extension

Some students struggled throughout the lesson. I invited students to a smaller group session and gave each student a copy of their assignment and a pair of scissors. I ask students to cut apart the cards.


I explain that they are going to use these numbers to create large numbers.  I ask students to play with the numbers for 1-2 minutes. I ask students what they notice about the numbers. I accept several responses; however, they are not reasonable. I write a number on the board and ask students to use their number cards to create the number. I do this several times.  If students are struggling, I model for them how to stack the numbers on top of each other to create the number. I discuss the value of each digit by pulling out the number card to reveal the value. I repeat this process until students are able to explain the process mathematically.