Lesson Plan

Multiple-Digit Addition and Subtraction (4th Grade)

This is a lesson to teach multiple-digit addition and subtraction to 4th grade students. It includes a math talks activity. The wrap-up activity assigns students to create/generate a worksheet/quiz with an answer key.
Sherri H.
Special education instructor
Davis Creek Elementary School
Barboursville, United States
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My Grades K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
My Subjects English Language Arts, Math

Students will be able to add and subtract three- and four-digit numbers. Students discuss how math talks aid in their problem solving ability. Students will create a math talk to share with class.


4.NBT.4 Fluently add and subtract multi-digit whole numbers using the standard algorithm.

English Language Arts
Social Studies
Grades 4 – 5
All Notes
Teacher Notes
Student Notes

1 Hook

Students will discuss previous math talks that dealt with addition and subtraction. They will share with class. Students will watch the video from BrainPop on addition and subtraction. Questions to address: 1) How do I line up digits in my multi-digit addition and subtraction problems? 2) What digits do I begin with to add and subtract multiple-digit numbers? 3) What if a digit being added equals a two-digit number? 4) What if a digit being subtracted is less than the digit from which I am subtracting?

2 Direct Instruction

Fourth Grade Splash Math Games
Free, Free to Try, Paid

3 Guided Practice

Activity: Other — Math Talk

1) Teacher will model 1 addition problem:

  254+183 =

2) Students do math talk with 1 addition problem:

  472 + 423 =

3) Teacher will model 1 subtraction problem:

  983 - 521 =

4) Students do math talk with 1 subtraction problem:

  876 - 521 =


4 Independent Practice

Free to Try, Paid

Students will go to 4th grade math. 

1) Students will complete the addition activity at http://www.ixl.com/math/grade-4/add-numbers-up-to-millions, which determines and displays student proficiency in multiple-digit addition.

2) Students will complete the subtraction activity at http://www.ixl.com/math/grade-4/subtract-numbers-up-to-millions, which determines and displays student proficiency in multiple-digit subtraction.


5 Wrap-Up

Free to Try, Paid

As homework, students will create their own quiz to share with/administer to the class.


1) Go to Worksheets.

2) Click on Free Worksheets.

3) Click on 4th Grade Worksheets.

4) Click on Addition in Columns.

5) Generate perameters. Print or save to flash drive. Include the answer key.

6) Return to number 1) and repeat steps for subtraction.

7) Present to class on the following school day.