Subtraction Rap

This morning I was able to sleep in until 8:00.  That felt good since I usually get up at 4:15.  Plus, my leg is still sore from my splits fiasco, that it was just nice not to have to rush anywhere.  My body was relaxed, but my brain was on the go.  I began thinking of my 2nd grade class and how we are learning double-digit subtraction with ungrouping.  We have spent a good bit of time with the conceptual idea of ungrouping tens, or breaking them apart.  At the beginning of the year, we were excited when we could make tens.  Now, I want them to break tens apart.  Next week, we are going to take on two different algorithms to help us with double digit subtraction.  The first algorithm uses Expanded Notation.  For example:  42 – 26 = _____.  The Expanded Method looks like this.

Expanded Notation

The second algorithm is the Ungroup First method.  This is the traditional algorithm that most of us learned when we were in school.  The Ungroup First method looks like this.

Ungroup First

In any case, I wondered how I could get my students to remember these algorithms.  So, I made up a rap.  Now that I have written it, it’s kind of cheesy, but I think it will help my kids remember these two algorithms.  Plus, it will be a lot of fun to recite the rap altogether.  Here is my subtraction rap.  You have to keep the drumbeat in your mind.  Maybe you can get a friend to be a human beatbox for you as you rap the words!  🙂

Subtraction Rap
This is the story of the kids in D-9
Who learned subtraction double-digits, so fine.

 Learning two algorithms saved the day.
Now they’re experts, what can we say?

 The first method learned was Expanded Notation.
They learned it so quick they had a celebration.

 First, you expand the numbers in the problem.
You have to do this step if you want to solve them.

 If you can subtract the numbers in each place,
Go right ahead you gotta keep the pace.

 If you can’t subtract, you must ungroup the numbers.
You have to do this step to prevent any blunders.

 After you ungroup, then subtract away.
You better hurry up, we don’t have all day.

 Ungroup First is the second method learned.
With lightning fast speed, papers almost got burned.

 To start this method, take a look at the ones.
If you can subtract, then your work is done.

 If you can’t subtract, you must ungroup the numbers.
You have to do this step to prevent any blunders.

 After you ungroup, then subtract away.
You better hurry up, we don’t have all day.

 This is the end of our subtraction tale.
We have to learn these methods so we don’t fail.

 Yo, we out!

See, I told you it’s cheesy.  I told you my brain was moving this morning.  I can’t wait to share this with my students next week.  I will let you know how it was received.

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