Digital Place Value Discs

Place value discs are great math manipulatives. As a Special Day Class teacher, my older students required the concrete nature of math manipulatives but shied away from base-ten blocks as those were "babyish" in their eyes. Enter place value discs. These provide a great representational bridge from concrete to abstract concepts. Students can model numbers, processes, touch them and use for counting. Purchasing them was beyond my teacher budget which always prefers free. So I made them on paper and laminated them for reuse. They stored quite nicely in medication containers for easy distribution, use, and clean-up.

But what about using them digitally? Using a combination of Google Drawing and Google Slides, it's possible to create a digital version of place value discs with a place value mat for modeling numbers digitally. I recently shared this as an example of something that can be done with slides that isn't a presentation at #cue16 and was surprised by the overwhelming response and interest that I have gotten regarding these.

So, here's my Google Drive folder with whole number place value discs I created using Google Drawing along with a Place Value Template to get you started. Look for future posts with more math templates, place value tiles, and directions on how to create your own!

Digital Directed Draw: Easter Basket

In the spirit of the upcoming Easter holiday, here's a new digital directed draw task to get started using Google Drawing. Students can design and create their very own Easter basket. Zero calories is an added benefit of these baskets!

Here's the steps.

1. Create the basket shape using the can tool.

2. Use the oval tool to create an overlay that can be filled in green for the grass.

3. Use the cloud tool to create the overflowing grass around your basket. You can duplicate the grass by holding down the control (PC/Chromebook) or Option (Mac) key and clicking and dragging to duplicate.

4. To create the handle, I used the arrow tool and adjusted the point of the arrow to almost completely eliminate it. By making the line transparent you can eliminate the remaining visible line.

5. Use the oval tool to create your eggs of various sizes and decorations. Duplicate and rotate eggs to change orientation and fill with different colors. Tip: Shift + Rotate will rotate object 15 degrees at a time.

6. Use the scribble tool to create some more authentic looking grass to add to your basket.

7. Use the arrange tool to arrange your eggs and grass as desired by selecting object > Arrange > Choosing various options. Repeat as needed.

8. Customize your basket by adding texture to the basket. Create a bow on the handle. Create a chocolate bunny. Add background landscape to your drawing. Or ??? Let your imagination guide you.