Roman Numerals


Our Roman Numerals lesson plan teaches students what roman numerals are, their history, and when and where they are still used today. Students will practice converting numbers into Roman Numerals and using them at appropriate times.

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 create a list of important events and have students write the year that each event occurred in Roman Numerals.

Buy Now For $1.95


What our Roman Numerals lesson plan includes

Lesson Objectives and Overview: Roman Numerals equips students to define, identify, and use Roman Numerals. This fun lesson engages students with gameplay and collaborative learning as they use numeral manipulatives. This lesson is for students in 4th grade, 5th grade, and 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 supplies you will need for this lesson are the handouts, scissors, and calculators. 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. An optional adjustment to the activity would be to either time it or limit it to a certain number of turns to help save time. For an additional game, you could create Roman Numeral bingo cards for the students to play bingo with. You could also have students create a mnemonic device to help them remember the correct order of the Roman Numerals. Finally, you could create a list of important events and have students write the year that each occurred in Roman Numerals.

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 we don’t use Roman Numerals as often today as we used to. However, we can still find them in old documents, in movies, and in other places. This page also includes lines that you can use to add your own notes as you’re preparing for this lesson.


Roman Numerals

The Roman Numerals lesson plan includes two pages of content. It begins by asking students if they’ve ever seen a clock that uses Roman Numerals for the numbers. We also sometimes call Roman Numerals Roman Numbers instead. The Ancient Romans used Roman Numerals as a numbering system. It was the main way of writing numbers all throughout Europe until the 1600s! Romans originally used them to mark the prices of various goods and services. In this system, the numbers are represented by letters from the Latin alphabet.

The lesson includes a chart that shows what Roman Numerals corresponded to what values. For example, the Roman Numeral I is equal to the number 1. Students will learn that there is no Roman Numerals for the number 0, and we always write them in upper case. Learning how to read and write Roman Numerals is not hard once you know the rules!

Rules for Using Roman Numerals

The next section of the lesson gives a few basic rules for using Roman Numerals. You never use more than three of the same numeral in a row. To write the number 4, you don’t just write IIII. When you write a smaller numeral to the left of a larger one, that means that you should subtract its value. Therefore, to write 4, you would write IV. V is 5 and I is 1, so IV is 5 minus 1. IX is 10 minus 1, or 9!

All of the values for Roman Numerals end in a 0, except for I and V (1 and 5). The other numerals equal 10, 50, 100, 500, and 1,000. You might find it easiest to remember the order of the Roman Numerals by memorizing them in pairs: IV, XL, CD, M.

The lesson then includes some additional examples of Roman Numerals, what they stand for, and how to do the math to figure out their value. For example, CDIII equals 403 because D minus C is 500 minus 100, plus III, which is 3!

Uses for Roman Numerals

The final section of this lesson discusses some of the ways we use Roman Numerals. We sometimes see them on clocks or watches. For a long time, we used them to show the copyright year for a book or movie. However, more recent books and movies might use standard years. People sometimes have Roman Numerals at the end of their names, such as Noah Tremblay III (which you would read as Noah Tremblay the Third). Queens, kings, popes, and more also use them at the end of their names. Some examples are Pope John VII or King Henry VIII.

There are also some buildings or monuments that have Roman Numerals carved into them to show the year they were built or completed. Some people also use Roman Numerals to number the main headings while taking notes. Finally, the Super Bowl used to use Roman Numerals to show which Super Bowl it was (for example, Super Bowl VIII). Today, they often use standard numbers instead.

It is helpful for students to learn how to read and write Roman Numerals. Students must learn to be careful while writing them, just like they should be with standard numbers! If you accidentally write an extra symbol or leave one out, you could communicate the wrong thing.


The Roman Numerals 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.


Students will work in pairs to complete this activity worksheet. Each student will first cut out the provided Roman Numerals and shuffle them together with their partner’s set, placing all of them in a pile on their desk or table. They will then take turns choosing two of the Roman Numerals and adding them together. They will record the total using the given chart. Whoever has the the highest total at the end of the game wins!


For the practice worksheet, students will practice writing the standard number for each Roman Numeral listed. They will then write the Roman Numeral each standard number listed. This will allow them the opportunity to practice using what they’ve learned during the lesson.


The homework assignment has students answer a variety of questions about Roman Numerals. They will first have to list five places where people use Roman Numerals. Next, they will write all of the Roman Numerals in order from largest to smallest and smallest to largest. They will then write a specific Roman Numeral in standard numbers. Finally, they will answer several additional practice questions to test their understanding of the lesson material.

Worksheet Answer Keys

This lesson plan includes answer keys for the practice worksheet and the homework assignment. No answer key is provided for the activity worksheet as students’ answers will vary. 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


4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade



State Educational Standards

LB.Math.Content.4.NBT.A.2, LB.ELA-Literacy.SL.4.2, LB.Math.Content.5.NBT.A.1, LB.ELA-Literacy.SL.5.2, LB.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.4, LB.ELA-Literacy.RST.6-8.2

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.

Customer Reviews
4.7 Based on 12 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:
New Zealand New Zealand

loved it

My son and I really enjoyed this lesson. We both got a lot out of it.

St. Lucia St. Lucia

Excellent Lesson Plan Resource

I like how organized it was. My students read and understood the content. The activities were also challenging but appropriate. However, one child spotted on the watch that the numeral 4 was represented by 4 letter Is' which was incorrect. Glad he understood Roman Numerals.

Canada Canada

Great resources!

It was a Great experience.

Australia Australia

Quality resource

This resource is ready to go and provides some simple practical worksheets for classes.

St. Lucia St. Lucia

Informative Resource

I love this resource and the wealth of knowledge and activities it contains. Thank you for this resource.