Activities to Teach Students to Regroup Tens and Ones – Ways to Make a Number

Regrouping tens and ones is an essential math skill that students must master in the early grades. By teaching students how to regroup, they are able to manipulate numbers and break them down into more manageable parts. Learning how to regroup tens and ones allows them to make better sense of numbers and develop a stronger foundation in arithmetic, as well as prepare them for more complex math topics in the future.

Here are some activities to help teach students to regroup tens and ones:

Base-10 Blocks

Base-10 blocks are physical manipulatives that can help students understand the concept of regrouping. These blocks consist of single units, rods of ten (tens), flats of a hundred (hundreds), and cubes of a thousand (thousands). By using the base-10 blocks, students can see how regrouping works visually.

The teacher can start by modeling these regrouping activities on the board or using a document camera. The teacher can present the problem and guide students’ thinking by using the base-10 blocks to demonstrate the process of regrouping tens and ones. For example, a teacher can show how 34 can be broken down into 3 tens and 4 ones and how regrouping can change this into 2 tens and 14 ones.

Place Value Chart

Another way to teach students how to regroup tens and ones is by using a place value chart. It is helpful to use a large chart that can be displayed on the board or in a document camera that can be shared with the class.

The teacher can use this chart to demonstrate how to write a number in the tens and ones place. Then, show how to regroup tens and ones by adding a ten to the tens place and subtracting ten from the ones place.

For example, when the ten’s digit of a number is greater than 10, like 47, the student has to replace it with 4 tens and 7 ones. To regroup, they have to take one ten from the 4 tens to make it 3 tens and add ten to the 7 ones to make it 17. The final number becomes 37.

Number Bond Sorting

Number bonds are another excellent way to teach students how to regroup tens and ones. By using number bond sorting, students can understand how groups of tens and ones relate to a particular number and how these groups can be modified.

For this activity, teachers should prepare a set of number bond cards, each containing a unique two-digit number that includes tens and ones. The students must sort these cards into two groups, one where the tens are greater than 10, and one where the tens are less than 10.

After the cards are sorted, the students should use the base-10 materials or place value chart to show how regrouping occurs when the tens place in a number exceeds ten. By sorting the number bond cards, students can gain a deep understanding of how numbers work and why regrouping is necessary.


Math games are an effective way to engage students and promote learning while having fun. Games help reduce math anxiety and increase student motivation to learn. Board games, card games, and computer games can be an excellent way to make math enjoyable.

One game that can help teach students how to regroup is “Race to 100.” The teacher can divide the students into two groups. Each group is given a game board and a set of dice. The game involves rolling the dice and adding the numbers to their board. If a student rolls a number that causes them to go past ten on the ones digit, they need to regroup to the next ten, and they lose their turn.


By utilizing these activities, students can gain a deep understanding of the concept of regrouping tens and ones. As a teacher, employing these methods will enable you to engage students, make learning fun, and help them develop crucial math skills that will serve them well throughout their academic careers. When students approach math with a positive attitude, they are more likely to succeed and see the beauty and utility of numbers.

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