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Get Ready Get Set

Practice counting, adding, and dividing into sets with used markers. Decorate a colorful box for each set!

  • Kindergarten
  • Multiple Lesson Periods
  • Directions

    1. Introduce the lesson with a book about recycling such as "I'm Not a Plastic Bag" by Rachel Hope Allison or "The Lorax" by Dr. Seuss. Ask children to think of everyday items they could recycle. Discuss plans for the Crayola ColorCycle program and why it is important to repurpose markers.
    2. Ask the students to bring some recycled boxes from home, for example, shoe boxes, along with any used markers they might have that they would otherwise discard. Distribute the used markers so that groups of children work collaboratively and have a dozen or two markers for sorting into sets. Use the markers for a variety of math experiences, including sorting by color sets and to practice counting and simple addition.
    3. Ask students to group their markers by color. Talk about sets. Have students count their markers by sets. "How many red markers do you have? How many blue markers?" Which group of students "Has the largest set of green?"
    4. Assign each group a color to use as they decorate a shoebox. Have them cover their boxes with plain background paper. Ask them to talk about things they associate with their color (red apples, fire trucks, roses, etc.), and then to use Crayola Crayons or Markers to draw a few of those visuals. Ask students to draw the images on individual pieces of paper and to collaboratively plan how they will combine the images to decorate the group's box. They will cut out their pictures and attach them to the boxes using a Crayola Glue Stick. Write the color names on the board. Ask one student from each group to write the name of their group's color onto the box lid.
    5. Put the finished boxes on the counter. Invite students to drop their used markers into the color coded boxes. Continue to use the markers as math manipulatives. Ask students to keep adding markers to the boxes throughout the collection period. Conduct a grand count before adding them to the school's ColorCycle collection.
  • Standards

    LA: Ask and answer such questions as who, what, where, when, why, and how to demonstrate understanding of key details in a text.

    LA: With guidance and support from adults and peers, focus on a topic and strengthen writing as needed by revising and editing.

    MATH: Use addition and subtraction within 20 to solve word problems involving situations of adding to, taking from, putting together, taking apart, and comparing, with unknowns in all positions, e.g., by using objects, drawings, and equations with a symbol for the unknown number to represent the problem.

    MATH: Understand that the two digits of a two-digit number represent amounts of tens and ones.

    MATH: Add within 100, including adding a two-digit number and a one-digit number, and adding a two-digit number and a multiple of 10, using concrete models or drawings and strategies based on place value, properties of operations, and/or the relationship between addition and subtraction; relate the strategy to a written method and explain the reasoning used.Understand that in adding two-digit numbers, one adds tens and tens, ones and ones; and sometimes it is necessary to compose a ten.

    SCI: Provide evidence that humans’ uses of natural resources can affect the world around them, and share solutions that reduce human impact.

    SS: Identify examples of rights and responsibilities of citizens.

    VA: Know how the differences among visual characteristics and purposes of art in order to convey ideas.

    VA: Select and use subject matter, symbols, and ideas to communicate meaning.

  • Adaptations

    Read additional books about recycling such as “Michael Recycle” by Ellie Bethel.

    Use your markers to create simple equations such as 2 red markers + 4 red markers = 3 red markers + 3 red markers, totaling a dozen markers.

    Brainstorm other ways their markers can be divided into sets, subsets and to demonstrate their math skills.

    Hold a class discussion about how families recycle at home and how students recycle in school.


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  • Creativity.
  • Capacity.
  • Collaboration.
  • Change.
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