understanding and applying mathematics standards for young children 13
what to look for
• Children will use the goldfish crackers to
act out the story.
• Some children will only respond to one
mathematical operation if there are two
• Children will add and subtract fish as they
model the story.
• Some children will extend the story or
make up their own stories.
• Some children will decide what to do by
watching other children.
ModifiCationS for SPECial
nEEdS or SituationS
Start with fewer crackers (two or three) and
simplify the directions for children who are
younger or less advanced. Use more goldfish
with children who are more experienced with
quantification. In kindergarten, teachers can
create stories that emphasize particular num-
ber combinations children may be working on.
Because the emphasis in this activity is on
modeling mathematical problems, it aligns
with the Algebra standard. It connects equally
well to Number and Operations with its
emphasis on quantification, addition, and
CoMMEntS and QuEStionS
rElatEd to MathEMatiCS
Problem Solving: Each question in the story
emphasizes problem solving.
Reasoning and Proof: How did you figure out
how many fish would be left?
Communication: Tell Christina why you
think she should have five fish now instead
Connections: Is there a way to make a pattern
with the fish? (Connects to Algebra)
Representation: Can you draw a picture of