Thursday, October 4, 2012

Subitizing? (Nope, it's not a post about Sub Plans!)

So my colleagues and I have been doing a fun domino activity for a few years now.  We flash the kids domino dots and they have to say the number as quickly as they can:
It's basically flashcards for counting.   
Speed is what we're trying for.  

I encourage speed by saying things like  "How fast can your math brain tell you the number!?"

Once they're good at the "simple" set of cards we move on to the "harder" cards:

Again, speed is the goal and VIOLA the kids are adding and they don't even know it!  Woo Hoo!  Plus, they are FAST!

Now, what we DIDN'T know (and one of my colleagues, Jill stumbled upon on YouTube) is that we are Subitizing!
Huh?  I mean. . . oh yeah, we knew that (ha- right!)

Subitizing (pronounced Soo-bitizing) is literally "instantly seeing how many." 

I am here to tell you people:  It works!!  
My kids are better adders and they actually SEE numbers in their head.  It's amazing!

Check out this YouTube vid my colleague found:

And this video which explains even more:

We used to use domino cards like these:
Super simple to make:  Cut out cardstock rectangles and use colored circle stickers.

Of course being kindergarten teachers we wanted it to be cuter (It's a sickness. . . we know!) If you want to see the "cuter" version click HERE.

You have to admit:  the dots are precious!
Thanks to Teaching 4 Real for the fun clipart freebie!

Do you Subitize?


  1. We're working on subitizing much more this year. I love these cute dots! I also appreciate your preview of you packet. It is nice to see more of it. I may very well purchase really soon. I do love those dot cards instead of just black dots and my first graders would too. Thanks too for sharing the videos. I hope to share them with my grade level.
    First Grade Found Me

  2. I had never heard of this before, but I LOVE IT! I checked out the packet and it looks awesome. Great work - as usual! :)

  3. I love it!!!!! These cards will work right in to my Math Talks! Thank you