Thursday, August 16, 2012

Place Value Olympics and a Freebie

I was searching for something fun for my students to do with place value when I came across this post on pinterest, Place Value Marathon.  It really inspired me and I set out to work on my own version that would meet the needs of my 2nd graders.  I decided that I would go with the Olympics theme since it is so relevant right now.  During the first few days of school I heard lots of talk about the Olympic games.  I realized that my students were very excited about the Olympics and this would be a great way to motivate them. Well.......let me just say, when I told them that they were going to be participating in an Olympic event, I really got their attention. The first day of this activity was the Olympic Trials.  On this day we went over all the different skills that we had been learning about place value.  We went over our place value anchor chart and discussed the different ways to write a number.  After a quick discussion and review we got right into the Olympic Trials. I wrote a focus number on the board and began asking the students questions like what number is in the hundreds column, what is ten more than our focus number, etc.  I then allowed them to write their responses on their table with an expo marker......they love this. 

I told them that since today was the Olympic Trials they had to prove by their good work that they deserved a spot in the Olympic Games.  Boy oh boy, did that ever work!!  They were all determined to earn their spot.  I was happy to announce at the end of our math time that they had all made it to the Olympic Games which would take place tomorrow in our classroom. The next day they came in very excited about the big upcoming event.  We started out by talking about how the Olympics takes discipline, motivation, and determination.  We discussed that not only do Olympic athletes have to be good at their event but they also have to be disciplined.  I discuss my expectations for behavior during the Games as well as explaining how the event works. I placed the task cards around the room and assigned each person a starting point. 

Each student was given a response sheet and a pencil.   I explained that the task are numbered so it is very important that they looked at the number and respond in the appropriate space on their student response sheet.  Once they got started I allowed them to move among the task freely.  They knew to find a task that not very many people were at.  They did really well with this!!  After they completed all 15 task they turned their sheet in and was rewarded the Place Value Gold Medal. 

I hope you enjoy this free download. 

Click on the pictures below to download. 


  1. Aw what an incredibly cute idea! I definitely want to incorporate some Olympics into the year and love how you used it! :) Thanks so much for sharing this!

    Reaching for the TOP!

    1. You are so welcome!! The kids really enjoyed this activity!!

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