Subtraction Games

Subtraction Games that will teach your child the strategy of:

Write and solve subtraction story problems using the subtraction strategies.

The 3 strategies that are the most conducive children who are or close to 3rd grade are: Guess and Check, Find a Pattern, and Make a Picture. These strategies will be a springboard for critical thinking that is the emphasis of this unit.

Practice Strategy:

Guess and check: children make a reasonable estimate, check their answer, then adjust their answer to until it is correct.

Subtraction Games /Activities:

What's Cheaper:

When your shopping with your child, involve them in price comparisons. Which peanut butter is cheaper? Have them make an educated guess, then check their answer. Children love to make shopping decisions!

Over Budget?

Give your child the budget for shopping. As your shopping ask your child to keep a running total of the items you buy to make sure you don't spend too much. Another great idea, is to give your child $5.00 and let him/her find items that when combined are not over $5.00.

Practice Strategy:

Find the Pattern: Once a child notices a pattern they then apply the pattern to a new situation.

Real Life Patterns:

Find Patterns and continue the patterns, here are some places to look:

Clock hands

Patterns on drapes, carpets, cabinets napkins

Patterns on clothing (especially pajamas)

Counting by 2's, 5's, 12's- whatever you want!

Ask your child to make a pattern rule: For example, the clock pattern rule is +5.

Practice Strategy:

Make a Picture: Draw a picture to illustrate the problem and use the picture to solve the problem.


Draw a Story: Model for your child how you can draw out the story and then use the story to solve the problem:

Caroline made $30.00 at her bake sale on Friday. If she has three more bake sales, one each Friday for the next three weeks, how much money will she have at the end of the month if she earns the $30.00 each time?

2. Parts and Wholes: This is a great way to visualize story problems. It involves drawing boxes to represent parts of a problem in comparison to the whole. Try it with your child on their next homework assignment. Here are some examples ( pay attention to what parts and what wholes the story problems gives us).

Some problems will be comparing things. Usually words like " how many more or how many less" indicates these story problems.

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