Friday, September 16, 2011

The Commutative Property

Don't ask me why, but I love the Commutative Property!  No joke.  I remember the feeling of really "getting it" when I was little and knowing the big, fancy terminology for it made me feel kinda smart inside.  (I was a dork from the start!)

With a name like "Commutative Property" I can understand how a kid can get intimidated and maybe even tune out.  It sounds pretty official.  =)  But when you know the commutative property, it opens up understanding to so many other concepts like Fact Families!

Last week I made a Math center for my kids, heping it would solidify the concept for them.  I fell back on my trusty dominoes!  (**Sidenote** Go to and get a set of the miniature dominoes.  I think you get a dozen sets for $8.  You can use them for so many activities in Math if you ever get bored of your number generating dice!)  I had my kids choose a domino, record the number of dots on each side, and write the corresponding addition sentence.  Then I had them flip the domino and repeat the steps.  It helped them to understand that just like the value of a domino doesn't change no matter what angle you look at it, the sum of numbers will not change even when they are added in a different order.

Here's my worksheet.  It's a FREEBIE!  Hope your kids enjoy . . . but most of all, I hope it helps them build understanding!


  1. Oops, I had two great blogs opened at the same time and wrote this on the wrong one. I apologize. Delete it if you can!

    You have a very clever way of using dominoes to teach cumulative property and it as well would work for multiplication! :-) Thanks for sharing.

  2. @ Brian - No worries! I understand! And thanks for mentioning how it works with multiplication. I never thought about that since I don't teach multiplication, but you're right!

    Glad y'all like this and can use it!

  3. I LOVE this! Thank you so much for sharing! My kiddos will love it this week!

    Ms. Preppy's Adventures in Primary and Polka Dots


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