Equal Groups of Multiplication With a Lesson and a Freebie

Learning to make equal groups in multiplication is a great place to start for those just beginning or learning about multiplication. 2nd - 3rd graders can take advantage of this lesson on making equal groups. 
Here is a fun activity to get students thinking and working with equal groups in multiplication.
  • I write the word, "Equal Groups" on the whiteboard and talk with the students what the word "equal" means. 
  • I tell the students they will be arranging themselves into equal groups. I roll a die to see how many groups they will make and if they can make each group equal. For example, if you have 20 students and you rolled the number 5. The students arrange themselves so there are 5 groups. Students will see that there are 4 people in each group, there are no left overs, and every group has the same number of people in it. On the board I write, 5 x 4 = 20. Also draw 5 circles with 4 marks in each circle to represent the groups they just made.
  • Roll the die again. Say you roll a 3. See if the students can arrange themselves into 3 equal groups. Will there be equal amounts in each group? Will there be any people leftover? As you know, 3 groups of 20 will not make equal groups. If there are people left over, then you cannot make equal groups. Keep rolling the die so students have a chance to arrange themselves into 2 groups, 4 groups, and 1 group. Keep writing on the board the equal groups they make and the multiplication sentence that goes with each one.  
  • Next I give a pair of students 1 cup of tokens. You can use anything for tokens that students can count and make groups with. I used the "ones" cubes from our place value unit as tokens. I've seen other teachers use beans or pennies. Put a good handful of tokens in a cup for each pair of students to work together to make equal groups. 
  • On the board I wrote the numbers 18, 15, 20, 24. Students could start with any number. If they started with the number 18, they would count out 18 cubes from their cup. Then they rolled the die to see if they could make equal groups with the number they rolled. They were to count how many equal groups they could make and write if there were any leftovers on their paper. They can do this work on a whiteboard, in their math journals, or on a blank piece of blank paper. Or you can use the sheet I made below. Click the picture below to download the free worksheet to practice making equal groups.
  • Then they used the next number, 15 cubes, and did the same thing of rolling the dice and making groups. I walked around the room assessing groups to see if they were understanding equal groups and staying on task. If students were done early, they were assigned other numbers to make equal groups.    
  • After the activity, I called students over to see if they could tell me what they learned or discovered about equal groups. We reviewed which numbers could make equal groups and shared our results on the whiteboard or chart paper.
  • If you have a weird number of students, like 17 or 19, you'll need to join the group to make a perfect number of 18 or 20 to make this activity work well.
 Making Equal Groups Worksheet

 Equal Groups Valentine Worksheet
I have a fun and FREE Valentine/Hearts to help keep practicing counting equal groups. Students count the equal groups of eyes from each heart. They write the multiplication sentence and the answer for each one. This is great for 2nd and 3rd graders. Use for homework or extra class work. Click the picture to download the making equal groups worksheet right here from Teacher's Take Out. It's doesn't have to be Valentines Day to use this worksheet either. This worksheet can be used anytime of the year. Students will get a kick out of the monster hearts with crazy eyes. Eye Love Equal Groups!
 Making Equal Groups Worksheet FREE
 Eye Love Equal Equations
EYE Love Equal Groups Task Cards. Here is the set of 20 task cards that are just like the free worksheet from above but in task card form. Students will love the theme, hearts and eyeballs! Students count the group of eyes on each heart and turn it into a multiplication sentence. Click the picture to learn more about it.  
 Equal Groups Multiplication Task Cards
Here is a set of task cards about counting equal groups to use anytime of the year. Students use the 20 task cards to count equal groups. They write the multiplication sentence and the answer for each one. This one is part of my $1 Deals. This is a great center to use the task cards with the recording sheets or as a 2 player game. Click the picture to learn more about this pack. 
 Equal Groups Equal Groups Task Cards
 Array Robots
Array Robots are all about counting and making equal groups. Students will love the robot theme while practicing their multiplication facts while using arrays. This pack has 36 task cards and a few worksheets to use with the task cards or on their own. Students use the task cards to match, play a game, or use to complete worksheets. Click the picture to read more about it. 
 Array Robots
 Array Robots
Here are some resources you may need when teaching multiplication and making equal groups:

Hopefully you learned a few tricks or found something that will help teach equal groups.
Thanks for stopping by today!
See you soon,  

 Equal Groups


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