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    Subtraction
    By Grace

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    I usually start with a game. I have already played this game the opposite way for addition with regrouping.
    To subtract, divide children into small groups. One is the banker. Each group has a die. I don't know what materials you use, but I use multibase tens and units to start. You could use toy money, dimes and pennies. Give each child 50 cents in dimes. The idea of the game is to be left with no money. The child throws the die. If they throw a 3 for example they can get rid of three pennies but to do this they have to exchange a dime at the bank. They then give 3 pennies to the banker. The child to get rid of all their money first is the winner. Near the end of the game it gets very exciting as they have to throw the correct number to get rid of their last few pennies.This game gives them the idea of exchanging. I always do my subtracting in a practical way first. I think it is much better that children know the real reason for exchanging rather than stories. I learnt through a story and I hadn't a clue what I was doing. You can then advance the game to hundreds or dollars when you are ready.
    Give them one dollar to start. This means they have no dimes or no pennies so they would have to do a double swap to subtract what they throw on the die. I hope you can understand this. I have started with this game with able and special needs children. They always seem to understand what they are doing because they can see when they have nothing. Good luck. Grace


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