Let’s count 1000 pancakes for Pancake Day!

• Published on February 25, 2022

Next week sees us here in Australia bid farewell to summer and welcome in the cooler (we — or I — hope) days of Autumn. Next Tuesday is not only 1 March, but also Pancake Day, which means it’s only six weeks until Easter and, for many of us, school holidays.

When I completed the recent audit of readilearn lessons in teaching number by mapping them to the Australian Curriculum, I realised that we were missing lessons in numbers over one hundred. As children in Year Two learn about numbers up to one thousand, I realised there was a gap to fill. I started by making a lesson called 1000 Pancakes.

I chose pancakes for three reasons:

1. Pancake Day is next week. However, the lesson can be used at any time of the year; it makes no reference to Pancake Day.
2. Pancakes are popular with children as well as adults.
3. Pancakes in stacks are easy to visualise.

The lesson 1000 Pancakes gives children the opportunity to visualise 1000 pancakes by comparing the quantity to 10 and 100. It is a lesson ready-to-teach on the interactive whiteboard, a readilearn readilesson.

In the lesson, children count pancakes

• in 1s to 10
• in 10s to 100
• and in 100s to 1000.

One thousand is a lot of pancakes.

Some fun slides at the end challenge children to think about the size of things in comparison to a 20 centimetre pancake.

I’m certain that, after counting all those pancakes, children’s mouths will be watering for pancakes. So why not make some? Cooking is a great activity as children learn in an integrated way across the curriculum. These are some of the things they are learning:

English

To understand the language of commands.

Maths

To measure quantities by volume.

To count the number of quantities.

Science

To understand the chemistry of mixing and adding and removing heat.

The readilearn recipe Let’s Make Pikelets is an easy one to make in the classroom, especially when children make it in small groups with the support of a teacher’s aide.

Easter

Of course, with Easter only six weeks away, some of you will already be thinking about Easter-themed resources. We have many of those to support your teaching too. I’ll share more about those in a couple of weeks but, if you want an early start, you can find them all in the Easter collection.

A good one to begin with is Easter Delivery, a story about bilbies that involves children in mathematical thinking and discussions about number combinations to ten.

While you are here, remember to check out the complete readilearn collection of

Resources beyond worksheets – lessons for teachers made by teachers.

While resources are available for purchase individually, best value comes through an annual subscription which gives access to all resources for a year for just A\$25. That’s less than 50 cents a week.

like Robbie noted, this is as nice way to visualize such a big number. and now I want pancakes…

Norah Colvin says:

Don’t we all, Jim. 🙂

A great idea for teaching children about large numbers, Norah. Pancakes are popular.

Norah Colvin says:

Thanks, Robbie. I think it’s good for children to be able to conceptualise large numbers. I’m not much good with really big numbers.

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