Montessori Addition Tables Work - Coloured Bead Bars

Xander is busy working his way through the Montessori Math Sequence. He is currently working on some tables work, in addition to some work in the 6-9 Sequence.

I am doing my best to post his work in the sequence our manuals offer but there is some cross over posting into 6-9. What I am posting is not always real time because it is a great deal to post.
Today I will show you some work he did with the lessons offered in our manual for addition fact practice/memorization.

Xander used the Montessori Addition Strip Boards when he was around 5 when we were learning the concept of addition. It is during memorization table work that the boards are introduced in our manual, and then followed with Chart work. At some points we used both. I also have posted about the Addition Snake Game.
In this post I will show you the work he did with Bead Bars in various forms, and a few other addition concepts including...

Bead Bars - commutative law, multiple addends, addends larger than ten, associative law, introduction to parenthesis ( )
Also - basic formats for addition, and story problems.

Xander is recording his work in a regular lined math journal. I think that there are many things to consider about recording, and I will let you know what we did. I think though that in terms of recording that it is entirely up to you and what suits your child in terms of age and skill level in writing.
When Xander started we used larger colour coded problem slips to record his work, and progressed to smaller ones.  He also enjoyed fact booklets when he was younger and has used them a little, but later in doing memorization work his preference was to move away from the booklets - many use them and love them though. We use our equations box and have ordered the cards by fact family for him to pull out and randomly work on facts - he is interested to work this way. Your child may wish to work differently.

We did lots of different simple activities to change up fact practice. Above rolling dice to make equations in a fact family and recording.

This is practice with using the bead bars for addends larger than ten and recording.

Introduction to parenthesis with the Arithmetic Signs Box

Exploring commutative law was an early discovery as was associative law.When these discoveries were made we sidelined our lesson to chat about the definition, and created other scenarios to explore further.

Noting his work

 Using number tiles to select a fact family and then turning over random tiles to create equations, and then recording.

Different formats for addition. These are all hand written for Xander to record in his journal.

Word problem practice. This set is from here - I like this initial presentation that she offers with the printable introducing language found in addition word problems.  

A bit of a stretch :)

We also used a set of word problems from here. Both early sets are simple fact practice, but more importantly also an exercise in the procedure for recording the answer of a word problem and showing your work. An added bonus is the writing and spelling practice.

To do this work you can use any assemblance of coloured bead stairs. Here is a great hand made version from Montessori Mischief. I used our Kid Advance Montessori Bead Decanomial Box, and a red felt mat I made from two pieces of dollar store felt. We used our Kid Advance Montessori Arithmetic Signs Box , but you can easily use a printed version. I found our dice at an education retailer but they can found anywhere.
All of this work is covered in our Math Manual.

At look back at some of our math

Thanks for visiting with us!

This post is linked up at Living Montessori Now!!
Montessori Monday



  1. I really love how you've used the beads to explore the properties of addition. We'll be trying this with our Cuisenaire rods!

    1. Thank you Julie!! I must say that I think the coloured bead bars are one of Xander's favorites and Ava is so taken with them as well. I LOVE Cuisenaire rods they are very much based on these bars, and are fantastic!! I hope you and yours enjoy your work with them :)


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