Commutative Property


In our Commutative Property lesson plan, students learn what the commutative property is in mathematics for both addition and multiplication and how to use it. Students practice identifying problems that use the commutative property as a part of this lesson.

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 your students begin to use both the commutative and associative properties together.

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What our Commutative Property lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Commutative Property explains the commutative property. It covers both addition and multiplication. The teacher can use several examples to review with the students. At the end of the lesson, students will be able to understand the commutative property of addition and multiplication. This lesson is for students in 2nd grade, 3rd grade, and 4th 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.

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. One optional addition to this lesson is to have your students begin to use both the commutative and associative properties together. If you have more advanced students, you can have them work with more than two numbers at a time. A helpful addition to the lesson is to physically demonstrate the commutative property by making pairs of students to demonstrate the concept in front of the class. Finally, you can have your students think of other examples of ‘commuting’.

Teacher Notes

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


Commutative Property

The Commutative Property lesson plan includes one content page. The word “commute” means to move around. The commutative property in mathematics tells you that you can move the numbers around in an equation and still get the same answer.

The commutative property of addition means that 3 + 5 = 5 + 3. Both of these equations equal 8. The commutative property of multiplication means that 2 x 4 = 4 x 2. Both of these equations also equal 8. The lesson includes one more example of each type.

That’s all there is to it! You can swap or move numbers around and still get the same answer.


The Commutative Property lesson plan includes three worksheets: an activity worksheet, a practice worksheet, and a homework assignment. You can refer to the guide on the classroom procedure page to determine when to hand out each worksheet.


The activity worksheet asks students to roll two dice. They will then write an equation using the commutative property like the one in the example on the worksheet.


For the practice worksheet, students will circle all of the equations that show the commutative property.


The homework assignment asks students to fill in the blanks in different addition and multiplication problems. They will also use the commutative property to fill in the blanks in equations.


This lesson also includes a quiz that you can use to test students’ understanding of the lesson material. For the quiz, students will draw a line between the matching equations.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet, the homework assignment, 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, 4th Grade

State Educational Standards