### How many chicks are hiding?

Digit Dog is using a hollow plastic egg and some fluffy chicks to create some number problems. This type of word problem requires more thinking than the problems such as “There are 4 chicks in my egg and 4 chicks on the floor. How many chicks are there altogether?”, where the end result is unknown.

The aim is to encourage learners to think and talk mathematically – to have a mathematical conversation and use their knowledge of additive relationships and the link between addition and subtraction.

Ask learners to:

- Explain what the problem is about in their own words.
- Explain what information they know and what they are trying to find out.
*How many chicks are not in the egg? What number of chicks cannot be in the egg?* - FInd a way to work out how many chicks are in the egg.
- Describe the strategy they have used. They might:
- act it out – using children themselves (with chick masks)
- act it out – using toy chicks
- use counters to represent the chicks
- draw pictures of the chicks
- use an eight Numicon shape to lace the chicks on
- use number bonds

- Convince everyone that their answer is correct. Use sentence starters such as:
**I know the answer is 4 because ….****First of all I…………then I………****I know that …….. so…………**

- Write a number sentence
- Change the number of chicks in the egg.
- Think about a
*What if………*?

What if there were more than 8 chicks altogether?

What if the story wasn’t about chicks?

Can learners transfer their thinking to a new problem?

Make up some of your own problems like this one for your friend.

**The five proficiences**

Learners will use:

- strategic competence to make sense of the problem, work out what is known and what needs to be found out and to decide on a way of solving it.
- logical reasoning to explain their thinking, to make sense of the problem and to use what they know to work it out.
- conceptual understanding of, and fluency with, number bonds for 8 in order to use them to solve the problem and to be efficient and accurate with the basic calculations.
- communication using symbols and correct mathematical vocabulary to write number sentences and explain their thinking .

Learners will need to be competent in all five proficiencies in order to create their own problems.