Category Archives: Numeracy for Year 4

Year 4 Emergency Lesson Plans for Numeracy

Lesson plans for supply teachersThese emergency lesson plans for Year 4 Numeracy are only to be used by supply teachers who are faced with no planning or easily accessible resources. Also to be used following the guidance notes here.


Block A – Counting, partitioning and calculating

  • Mentally add/subtract pairs of 2 digit numbers, investigate methods used as a table/class. Teach a written method on adding/subtracting 2 and 3 digit numbers, £.p included. Give word problems to which they can then apply this method.
  • Invite children to call out numbers between 11 and 99/999 (4 digit numbers) and write on the board. Firstly get the children to read them out loud to a partner, then cover them up, you read them, and ask the children to write them in digits/letters, reveal the numbers and ask the children to order them, carry on partitioning them or rounding them, or repeat above activities with different sets of numbers.
  • Go through story of temperature through your day, (in winter!) introducing children to positive and negative numbers on a number line (thermometer), children to calculate rise and fall in temperature and write as number sentence.
  • Give children one and two-step word problems involving measures based on a recipe, you don't want to make one batch of scones, you want to make 1 and a half, or three batches etc., ask children to explain orally, then on paper, how they worked it out. Always estimate and check.
  • Work on multiplication tables to 10 * 10, work on 2-digit doubles and multiplying by 10 and 100. Children to demonstrate their written methods on the board for you, and then use these to answer questions in books. Also do division, discussing remainders in context of the question.

Block B – Securing number facts, understanding shape

  • Using a calculator if you can find them/enough. Sums and differences of multiples of 10, 100, 1000. Emphasis on estimating and checking mentally/on paper, and reading calculator carefully (many children miss the decimal point, give questions to highlight this!)
  • Draw a simple graph on the board, temperature in classroom through 24 hours perhaps, and ask children to solve 1 and 2-step word problems from it. Go through with them carefully how to first select important information, then choose an operation, estimate, work it out, then check it.
  • Properties of shapes: draw polygons on board, give a label: a, b, c, etc., and children must classify according to a set of criteria that they drew up with you (guide them to number of edges, number of lines of symmetry, number of vertices, parallel lines and right angles.)
  • Give children a number investigation, i.e. Gnome has a red, yellow and blue hat, red, yellow and blue jumper, and a red, yellow and blue pair of trousers. How many different combinations of clothes has he got? Can they estimate first?
  • Visualising 3-D shapes: draw a structure on the board using a given number of cubes such as multi-link, and children have to make the shape, and draw it in their books from front, bird's eye, below etc. Draw another shape using more cubes.

Block C – Handling data and measures

  • Comparing scales, draw timeline of school day, their life, and known historical periods. Look at impact of scales, try to add school day times to historical period scale.
  • Gather data using tally chart on number of siblings members of class have/number of hours spent watching TV/doing homework a night etc., and ask children to present not only as tally chart, but as a table/pictogram/bar chart.
  • Give children random facts relating to their current humanities topic (make sure they know they are fictitious and for the purpose of the lesson only) for example, how many legionnaires each centurion (give them names!) sent home with a cold in December 956AD or how many servants Henry VIII took with him on each of his different holidays, or how many climbers have scaled certain mountains) and ask them to organise the facts to present them as a table or graph. Present questions based on data, how many more did, how many in total, how many would there have been if…
  • Got access to the ICT suite? Whole class comfortable with collating data on the one board? Use Excel or equivalent to record data findings (see above.)
  • Sizing up your classroom: table with columns such as object, estimated length, estimated width, actual length, actual width, difference in estimated and actual for more able. Measure in cm and convert to mm.

Block D – Calculating, measuring and understanding shape

  • Addition and subtraction of 2-digit numbers mentally, warm-up, then written methods of 2- and 3-digit numbers, using measures and quantities i.e. £.p
  • Reading numbers from partly numbered scales… draw up on board and ask children to fill in the blanks on the first few, then give pointers for them to record the reading on the rest.
  • 1- and 2-step word problems involving 12-hour clock time intervals, am and pm.
  • Areas and/or perimeters of rectangles: draw them on the board, then do a table, rectangle A, length 20, width 4 etc.
  • Compass points, very kinesthetic lesson! Children to draw compass in their book and label, but not until you have labelled together points in the classroom (is there one painted on the playground?)
  • Learn the terms horizontal and vertical. Relate to real life, horizon, children to lie/stand themselves/their pencils/other object, as their peers instruct. Move onto describing positions on a grid, desert island, where is the shipwreck?
  • Consolidate written method of * or / the children have learnt, TU by U, look at remainders in context of question given.

Block E – Securing number facts, relationships and calculating

  • Equivalent fractions, fractions of cake/pizza/egg boxes that are equivalent, look at patterns in equivalent fractions 'number line' and relation to times tables i.e. 1/2, 2/4, 3/6, 4/8.
  • Mixed numbers: adding and subtracting them (with same denominator) after introducing.
  • Fractions of shapes/quantities: flags/stars/rectangles/circles (pizza/cake) or quantities: five children, £10, 1/5 of £10 to see how much they can have each to spend at the cinema. Worded problems.
  • Money problems, 2-step: Given £10 to spend, would like to buy 3 x £2.75 books, what change do you have?
  • Ratio and proportion: Word problems, to be written as organised number sequences etc. by children: if for every blue marble Joe had, Shirley had 2 green ones, how many green ones does Shirley have if Joe has 8 blue ones? Increase numbers, children to find a rule, how to work it out.

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