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Lesson Plan #: AELP-ATH0040
Submitted by: Susanne E. Chew
Email: susannechew@1stconnect.com
Endorsed by: Dr. Virginia W. deThy, Director of Teacher Education
             Richard Stockton College of New Jersey, Pomona, NJ Date: February 1, 2000

Grade Level(s): Kindergarten, 1, 2


  • Mathematics/Arithmetic

Duration: 20-40 minutes Description: Uses a number line and a game similar to 20 questions. Teacher draws a number line, thinks of a number, students try to discover what number he/she is thinking of by asking greater than/less than questions.

Goals: Students will:
1. reinforce the concept of greater than/less than.
2. stimulate higher order thinking and number sense.

Objectives: Students will:
1. identify which is the greater and which is the lesser of two given numbers.
2. ask greater than/less than questions to eliminate numbers on the number line.
3. tell which numbers are eliminated, and which are not, as the result of an answer to a question.


  • chalkboard and chalk

Draw a number line from 0 to 25 on the chalkboard. Label each number. Tell the students you are thinking of a number between 0 and 25. They are to ask questions in order to find out what the number is. The questions must be in the format of, Is it greater than/Is it less than? Answer the questions yes or no, then indicate which numbers are now eliminated by the questions. Encourage the students to ask questions which will eliminate the most possible numbers. No guessing is permitted at first. The students may guess specific numbers only after the field has been narrowed down to 5 numbers.

After playing a few times, the students who ask the questions may also tell which numbers on the number line are eliminated. Later they may be required to do so. Have the student asking the question go up to the board and mark out the numbers eliminated by his question, while explaining what he is doing. The student who guesses the number can go to the front and think of a number and call on his peers. Make sure everyone gets a turn. As the students progress, the number line can go higher.

Assessment: The students loved playing this game. They showed by the questions they asked that their understanding of numbers was growing. In addition, a written assessment of greater than/less than showed that everyone now understands and can use this concept.