Integers (Add & Subtract)


In our Integers (Add & Subtract) lesson plan, students learn how to multiply and divide integers. Students complete practice problems in order to solidify their understanding of the lesson material.

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 make number lines that show positive and negative integers, using chips or other manipulatives to show the adding and subtracting of integers.

Buy Now For $1.95

Categories: , Tag:


What our Integers (Add and Subtract) lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Integers (Add and Subtract) equips students to add and subtract integers with practical understanding. With a review of the process of combining integers and ample additional resources to solidify understanding, students are prepared to generalize examples where integers are used. At the end of the lesson, students will be able to add and subtract integers. This lesson is for students in 6th 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 only supplies you will need for this lesson are scissors 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. One optional addition to this lesson is to have students make number lines that show positive and negative integers, using chips or other manipulatives to show the adding and subtracting of integers. One optional adjustment to this lesson is teach the first two rules (adding integers) on the first day and the second two rules (subtracting integers) the second day of the lesson.

Teacher Notes

The teacher notes page includes a paragraph with additional guidelines and things to think about as you begin to plan your lesson. It notes that students should already be aware of integers and absolute values before you teach this lesson. This page also includes lines that you can use to add your own notes as you’re preparing for this lesson.


Integers (Add & Subtract)

The Integers (Add and Subtract) lesson plan includes two content pages. The lesson begins by reminding students that they’ve already learned about integers, the numbers above and below zero. They are whole numbers which include positive (above zero) and negative (below zero). Zero is not an integer. We can add and subtract all integers from each other. You likely started out by adding positive integers, but you can also learn to add and subtract negative integers as well. Integers can be positive (+) or negative (-).

Adding Integers

To add integers with the same sign, we add their values and keep the sign. For the problem 3 + 4 = 7, both integers are positive, so we keep the sign and add the numbers. The sum remains positive. For the problem -5 + -6 = -11, both integers are negative, so we again keep the sign and add. The result remains negative. Sometimes, we might see positive numbers written with a + in front, like +7 or (+7). This is the same as 7!

To add integers with different signs, we find the difference and keep the sign of the greatest number. For the problem -5 + 2 = -3, the signs are different. The difference between the two numbers is 3, and 5 is greater than 2, so the answer keeps the sign of the 5 (negative). The final sum is -3. For the problem 7 + -5 = 2, the difference is 2 and 7 is the greater number, so the answer keeps its sign (positive). Therefore, the final answer is 2.

To subtract a positive integer from another negative or positive integer, we use one of the first two rules to solve. For the problem -3 – 5 = 8, we use the second rule, because this is the same as having two negative numbers, -3 and -5. To solve, we add and keep the sign. For the problem 6 – 10 = -4, we use rule one, because this is the same as having one positive and one negative number. We find the difference and keep the sign of the greater number.

Subtracting Integers

To subtract a negative integer from another negative integer, it changes to addition. We can then use one of the first two rules to solve. For the problem -13 – (-9), it becomes -13 + 9 = -4. The problem 10 – (-3) becomes 10 + 3 = 13. If we say “minus a negative,”  it changes to addition and we simply add the two values using one of the methods described above.

We have four basic rules for adding and subtracting integers, but we use the first two most commonly. It’s important to correctly identify which sign to use. People sometimes find the last rule for subtracting integers confusing. To clarify, we say we’re taking away a loss. There’s no more loss, so we have to add. Practicing using these rules to solve problems is the best way to learn them!


The Integers (Add and Subtract) 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.


For the activity worksheet, students will first cut apart the provided digits and the positive and negative integers signs and equal sign. They will then create addition and subtraction integer problems, creating numbers no larger than 99 and avoiding any basic addition or subtraction problems. They’ll list each problem on the worksheet and solve. Finally, they’ll exchange their worksheet with another student to check each other’s answers.

Students may also work in pairs to complete this activity if you’d prefer.


The practice worksheet asks students to complete a few different exercises. The first asks them to place a point on the number line showing the correct answer for each problem. They will also solve various addition and subtraction problems and write the correct answer in the provided spaces. Another exercise asks them to solve problems and then circle the integer rule or rule numbers used. Finally, they will solve more practice problems, taking their time to think about combining integers to solve.


For the homework assignment, students will complete three exercises. The first asks them to write an example of an integer problem using each rule. The second asks them add or subtract the integers in 21 practice problems. Finally, the third asks them to solve four word problems, showing the integer sentence.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet and the homework assignment. 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


6th Grade



State Educational Standards


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.

Customer Reviews
5.0 Based on 1 Reviews
5 ★
4 ★
3 ★
2 ★
1 ★
Write a Review

Thank you for submitting a review!

Your input is very much appreciated. Share it with your friends so they can enjoy it too!

Filter Reviews:
Suzanne B.

Great Resource for Adding and Subtracting Integers

Used this with my 7th grade math class. The Rules pages are perfect for student notebooks and the practice worked really well.