Bond Blocks are a great resource to help primary school students build understanding and fluency in addition and subtraction. The system can be used just to teach Mental Maths but also as a central tool for coordinated maths intervention purposes
When to use Bond Blocks?
Bond Blocks offer a comprehensive approach to teaching addition and subtraction. The system serves two main purposes:
1. Teach Mental Maths to students in Years 1 to 3
Using the part-part-whole model, students learn to understand basic addition and subtraction facts and develop fluency and associated word problems.
The part-part-whole approach uses simple pictorial representation of maths questions or problems to help students visually see the relationship between numbers.
In practice, this means a horizontal Bond Block or bar shows the 'whole' amount, whereas directly underneath it, the identical whole amount is made up by smaller bars to show the 'parts' of the whole.
The Bond Blocks website features over 100 ready-to-go sequence activities to get started with this learning method for Mental Maths.
2. Use as a Maths Intervention Support System for students in Years 3 to 6
Bond Blocks are also a great maths intervention tool to provide support to students who are behind in their learning.
Firstly, the ‘Bond Blocks placement test’ is used to identify areas of difficulty. Based on the results from this test, activities can be started at the relevant chapter for students.
The next step is to set specific goals and monitor progress over time as students develop understanding and fluency on their journey towards mastering specific concepts.
Bond Blocks and its range of activities can also be used to support students with learning disabilities.
- The blocks are not scored, reducing the tendency to simply count.
- The natural wood colour of the sustainably-sourced New Zealand Pine reduces distraction of colourful plastic and focuses children on the numbers.
- Ten is represented with two different blocks: Linear Ten and an Empty Ten Frame, similar to a ten strip and ten frame.
- They are a ratio of one unit : 2 cm making them easy to manipulate.
- They are self-checking, encouraging number sense and estimation.
There’s a lot you can do with just the Blocks themselves and the Bond Blocks Out of the Box book, but the activity boards (included in a school pack) let you do so much more.
Support for Bond Blocks
Teaching Modelled in Video
- Explicit teaching of the activity
- Demonstrating to teachers how to link the mathematical manipulative, the language and symbols
Differentiations – Done!
- Free downloads and website instructions to make the activity a little easier or harder
- Activity Instructions, Assessments, Monitoring, Teacher Notes
What is Maths Intervention?
Maths intervention resources help students who are behind in their math learning.