Grades: 4‒7

Students use a scale to develop early algebraic concepts. They determine different ways to place shapes with assigned numerical values on one side of a scale to balance with given shapes on the other side. Students develop the understanding that a symbol, such as one of these shapes, has the same value each time it appears, and that an equal sign means “the same as.”

OBJECTIVES

- Students will use a balance to develop early algebraic concepts.
- Students will understand that a symbol can represent a number, and if the same symbol is used more than once, it still represents the same number.
- Students will understand that an equal sign means “the same as.”
- Students will develop strategies for finding different combinations of shapes to balance a scale.

COMMON CORE CONNECTIONS

Mathematical Practices

(1) Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them; (2) Reason abstractly and quantitatively; (3) Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others; (5) Use appropriate tools strategically; (7) Look for and make use of structure.

Content Standards

6.EE2, 6

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