Building Fact Fluency: An Introduction to Number Strings

Learn how to engage your students in constructing knowledge about mathematics

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Experience one of the most powerful routines to build fluency in your students. Using a series of related equations, participants will learn how to engage a group of children in constructing mathematical understanding by scaffolding their thinking through questions and discussion. Participants will learn how to support their students' learning through visual models including pictures, dot arrangements, math racks, ten frames, and the open number line. Together, we'll learn to recognize the structure of a number string and discover how these strings help children develop four number relationships that are fundamental for building fact fluency. Participants will leave with an understanding of the key components for planning and facilitating number strings in the classroom. 

About the Instructor

Lisa Ferguson, M.A.T., has more than 20 years experience in early childhood education. In addition to teaching in schools in Wheaton and West Chicago, Lisa has served as an Instructor and Mentor to early childhood teachers in UIC’s Alternative Certification Program and as an Emergent Literacy Consultant and Professional Development Presenter with Family Focus. She is currently a Math Coach and Professional Development Facilitator with the Early Math Collaborative at Erikson where she serves as a support and resource to English and Spanish-speaking early childhood teachers and directors.  


This workshop will help participants:

  • identify four number relationships fundamental to fact fluency
  • understand why number strings are so powerful
  • understand the progression of various visual models 
  • understand the architecture of number strings
  • identify essential components for planning and facilitating number strings in the classroom

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