Additional Strategies for +/-


Our Additional Strategies for +/- lesson plan teaches students additional strategies for addition and subtraction.

Included with this lesson are some adjustments or additions that you can make if you’d like, found in the “Options for Lesson” section of the Classroom Procedure page. One of the optional additions to this lesson is to have students use colors or highlighters to mark the place value of each number to make sure they line them up correctly.

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What our Additional Strategies for +/- lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Additional Strategies for +/- provides additional strategies for addition and subtraction. The lesson breaks down both operations using place value. At the end of the lesson, students will be able to add and subtract within 1,000. This lesson is for students in 2nd grade and 3rd grade.

Classroom Procedure

Every lesson plan provides you with a classroom procedure page that outlines a step-by-step guide to follow. You do not have to follow the guide exactly. The guide helps you organize the lesson and details when to hand out worksheets. It also lists information in the blue box that you might find useful. You will find the lesson objectives, state standards, and number of class sessions the lesson should take to complete in this area. In addition, it describes the supplies you will need as well as what and how you need to prepare beforehand. The supplies you will need for this lesson are poster sized paper, markers, and the handouts. To prepare for this lesson ahead of time, you can gather the supplies and copy the handouts.

Options for Lesson

Included with this lesson is an “Options for Lesson” section that lists a number of suggestions for activities to add to the lesson or substitutions for the ones already in the lesson. To help reinforce the lesson concepts, you could have students use colors or highlighters to mark the place value of each number to make sure they line them up correctly. You can also have students generate their own numbers as a class to use in practice problems. Finally, you could hide numbers on cards around room and have students find them and add or subtract.

Teacher Notes

The teacher notes page includes lines that you can use to add your own notes as you’re preparing for this lesson.


Adding Strategies

The Additional Strategies for +/- lesson plan includes two pages of content. The lesson begins with an example problem: you have 134 buttons, and a friend gives you 215 more. How many do you have total? This problem deals with three-digit numbers, which are made up of three place values (hundreds, tens, and ones). 134 has 1 hundred (100), 3 tens (30), and 4 ones (4). To add, you have to line up the numbers by place value. For the example problem, you have to line up the 4 and 5 in the ones place, the 3 and 1 in the tens place, and the 1 and 2 in the hundreds (134 + 215). Then, you start at the ones place and start adding! Continue with each place value, carrying as needed. The final sum of this problem is 349.

We set up subtraction problems the same way, lining up the place values. The lesson includes another example problem, 458 – 326. To solve, you line up the place values (with the larger number on top), and subtract starting from the ones place. The final answer for this problem is 132.

The lesson next illustrates how to solve both addition and subtraction problems using models, step-by-step. This is useful for students who have access to models.


The Additional Strategies for +/- lesson plan includes four worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, a homework assignment, and a quiz. You can refer to the guide on the classroom procedure page to determine when to hand out each worksheet.


Students will work with a partner to complete the activity worksheet. They will make up a story problem, which must have three components: one addition problem and one subtraction problem, both with numbers between 100 and 999, and a main character who is a person or animal. They will write out their story problem on a poster, but will write the answer on a separate piece of paper. Each group should decorate their poster. They will read their story problem to the class and each person will solve it.


The practice worksheet asks students to solve 12 practice addition and subtraction problems.


For the homework assignment, students will use a random three-number generator to generate numbers for addition and subtraction problems. They will then solve the problems.


This lesson includes a quiz that you can use test students’ understanding of the lesson material. The quiz asks students to solve two problems using the numbers 546 and 321. They will add the two numbers and subtract the two numbers.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet and the quiz. If you choose to administer the lesson pages to your students via PDF, you will need to save a new file that omits these pages. Otherwise, you can simply print out the applicable pages and keep these as reference for yourself when grading assignments.

Additional information


2nd Grade, 3rd Grade



State Educational Standards

LB.Math.Content.2.NBT.B.7, LB.Math.Content.3.NBT.A.2

Lessons are aligned to meet the education objectives and goals of most states. For more information on your state objectives, contact your local Board of Education or Department of Education in your state.

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