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Math Bugs is a really fun application to teach students number place value. Here in the lite version, automatically unlocked, is the 10,000s. I'm going to go ahead and select on the 10,000s bug. Here I have a bug that does not have wings, spots, antennae, or eyebrows. What I'd like to do is dress this bug up, but each one of those elements have a certain value to them. For example wings are worth 1000, spots are worth 100, and 10 eye are worth 10 and so on. When I click the Play button, it'll automatically generate a number for me. What I need to do is match this number by adding elements to my bug.
So I'll go ahead and grab some wings and I'll start pulling down thousands. I know I need to get to the seven thousands, so I'm going to go and start adding some wings here. Position my wings so they look good. So there I've got 6,000 ardian wings. Now, I could add a seventh wing, but that would be kind of strange, because my bug wouldn't be balanced. So maybe what I need to do is add ten spots to get to 7,000. Uh-oh, it won't let me add 10 spots.
I'm limited to nine which means I need to figure out how I'm going to continue to get to 7000, so what I might have to do is go ahead and come back and drag a wing on, so I'm at 7000, but I'm over 7900, so I can remove some spots. To get back down to 7,200, getting closer, now I can add some antennae. Antennae are worth ten each. Now the goal is to get to 60 so I'll go and see if I can add six different antennas. And the final thing is you need to add four various limbs, so I'll go and add four different legs to my bug.
And there I have it. I've now created a bug that equals 7,264. Pressing the Play button, I'll confirm that my bug does indeed equal 7,264 and I earned a gem for this bug. Students can continue to work with this bug until they've earned all ten gems. Once they've earned ten gems, they can go ahead and unlock a new bug. This application's great at teaching number sense, it also allows for students to have a problem solving approach to learning their place values for numbers.
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