ALEX Lesson Plan


Roll an Array

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  This lesson provided by:  
Author:Summer Payne
System: Mobile County
School: Pearl Haskew Elementary
The event this resource created for:CCRS
  General Lesson Information  
Lesson Plan ID: 33014


Roll an Array


This lesson presents a hands-on partner activity to introduce second graders to making rectangular arrays. Students will use number dice to roll numbers and then build the coordinating array. An equation will be written to show the sum of the equal addends.

This is a College- and Career-Ready Standards showcase lesson plan.

 Associated Standards and Objectives 
Content Standard(s):
MA2019 (2019)
Grade: 2
4. Using concrete and pictorial representations and repeated addition, determine the total number of objects in a rectangular array with up to 5 rows and up to 5 columns.

a. Write an equation to express the total number of objects in a rectangular array with up to 5 rows and up to 5 columns as a sum of equal addends.
Unpacked Content
Evidence Of Student Attainment:
  • use rectangular arrays to determine the total number of objects.
  • use repeated addition to determine the total number of objects.
  • write equations expressing the total number of objects with repeated addition.
Teacher Vocabulary:
  • Rectangular array
  • Rows
  • Columns
Students know:
  • how to use arrays and repeated addition as multiplication strategies.
Students are able to:
  • represent the total number of objects in a rectangular array as the sum of repeated addition.
  • choose and apply addition strategies to accurately compute sums for multiple addend problems.
Students understand that:
  • repeated addition determines the total number of items in a rectangular array.
Diverse Learning Needs:
Essential Skills:
Learning Objectives:
M.2.4.1: Distinguish between rows and columns.
M.2.4.2: Use repeated addition to solve problems with multiple addends.
M.2.4.3: Count forward in multiples from a given number.
Examples: 3, 6, 9, 12; 4, 8, 12, 16.
M.2.4.4: Recall doubles addition facts.
M.2.4.5: Model written method for composing equations.

Prior Knowledge Skills:
  • Give two sets of objects repeatedly from a larger group to represent multiples.
  • Establish one-to-one correspondence between numbers and objects.
  • Identify the = sign as equal.
  • Pair same and equal.
  • Know same when comparing numbers of objects.
  • Recognize cue words for plus (add, plus, combine).
  • Identify the + sign as plus.
  • Use manipulatives and counting, recognize and represent the number 20 as two sets of ten.
  • Use manipulatives and counting, recognize and represent the numbers 1 through 40.
  • Establish one-to-one correspondence between numbers and objects.
  • Rote count to forty.

Alabama Alternate Achievement Standards
AAS Standard:
M.AAS.2.4 Use repeated addition to find the sum of objects arranged in equal groups up to 10.

Local/National Standards:


Primary Learning Objective(s):

The students will understand that equal addends can be arranged into rectangular arrays and can be used to find the sum. The students will build arrays using manipulatives and write an equation to express the sum.

Additional Learning Objective(s):

 Preparation Information 

Total Duration:

31 to 60 Minutes

Materials and Resources:

Connecting cubes or counters, grid paper (attached), recording sheet (attached), slideshow presentation (attached)

Technology Resources Needed:

Interactive whiteboard or digital projector


A Smart notebook file is included for use with an interactive whiteboard. If you do not have access to an interactive whiteboard, it can be presented as a slideshow.


Engage Students:

  1. Show students the first three slides of the presentation with the pictures of the M&M's. Have them think-pair-share to discuss the following question: Which picture of M&M's is easier to count? Why? After sharing with their partner, invite students to share with the class. Introduce the term array. Explain that the second picture of M&M's forms an array. Make a list of some things that come in arrays (ex. eggs, donuts, canned drinks, bottled water, parking lots, etc.).


  1. Students will look at the first slide with the cubes. Choose a student to arrange the cubes into an array. Ask: How did you arrange the cubes? After student explains, ask the class if they agree with his arrangement? Ask how many cubes there are altogether. Ask: How do you know? Did anyone get the total a different way?
  2. Show the next slide. Ask a student to come show a different way to make an array with the same amount of cubes. Ask: Is the amount of cubes in both of these arrays the same? Discuss that no matter which arrangement the columns and rows are in you will still get the same sum.
  3. Relate the array to addition. Say: Turn to your partner and talk about how we could write a number sentence to go with this array. Have students share. Model writing number sentences for arrays. Use the next two slides of the presentation for examples of number sentences.
  4. Give pairs of students a grid (attached), a bag of 36 connecting cubes, and a pair of dice. Show slide with rules for the game "Roll an Array". One student will roll for columns and one student will roll for rows. They will work together to build an array and then write an equation to show the sum. Students will use the recording sheet (attached) to write the number sentences and record the numbers rolled. (Play for 15  -20 minutes)


  1. After students have played the game, discuss the different arrays that were made. Have groups of pairs discuss their arrays together and look for similarities. 
  2. Give each individual student a blank piece of paper. Show the final slide and have students complete the task.


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Assessment Strategies

The teacher will question throughout the lesson using the following questions: Which picture is easier to count? Why? What are some things that come in arrays? Is there a different way to arrange the array? How many cubes are there altogether? How do you know?

The final task can be used for the teacher to assess the level of understanding of the student. A checklist is attached for the teacher to use to decide future activities based on individual student performance.




If a student could not complete the task, give him/her a lower number to build an array. Before having him try again, review the beginning of the slideshow with the student. Go back to the list of real world items that we see in arrays. See if the student can think of anymore on his/her own. Use the Internet to research products that come in arrays.

View the Special Education resources for instructional guidance in providing modifications and adaptations for students with significant cognitive disabilities who qualify for the Alabama Alternate Assessment.