# Counting On

Counting On is the ability to count forwards from a number other than 1. Counting On is also a very helpful addition strategy but first let's look at the addition strategy that precedes counting on.

**Counting Three Times**

If your child is not yet able to count on, when it comes to an adding question, they will 'count three times'. Alex Lawson uses this term to describe a child who counts the first group, counts the second group and then puts all the counters together and counts everything a third time. This is the earliest stages of addition. This strategy is great for our early mathematicians but we want to encourage progression along the addition continuum.

**Transitioning to Counting On**

Counting On is the ability to count forwards from a number other than 1.

We can support that transition by using:

Our fingers

Number line

These tools are helpful because it helps your child keep track of this '**double counting'**. Your child needs count the numbers in order, *and *they need to know when they have counted 8 times.

To use this strategy, your child will need to be able to recall the numbers after five without saying the entire counting order up to five.

__Break It Down__

You can practice this skill by asking your child, "What number comes after 5?"

Try rolling a dice and counting on from the different numbers

__Add in Another Skill__

In order to support double counting, we can use dice with dots to help students keep track of how many times they have counted on

I like to use a dice with the numbers written on it and a dice with dots on it to support students who are transitioning to counting on

**Counting On As an Addition Strategy**

Once students get the hang of it, it is a very efficient strategy.

If the question is 5 + 8

The child says five

Then the child counts on eight times

__from the number 5__which sounds like: “6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13”

**Counting On from the Larger Number**

This strategy involves understanding the **commutative property of addition**.

This property tells us that 5 + 8 = 8 + 5

The order that we add does not matter.

When a student knows this, they can apply it to the question 5+8. It is more efficient to count on 5 times, as opposed to counting on 8 times. When students understand this property of addition, we will see students counting on from the larger number:

The child says

__eight__Then the child counts on

from the number__five times__which sounds like: "__8____9, 10, 11, 12, 13"__

It is helpful to know what conceptual understanding is necessary for students to progress in their mathematical thinking to the next step. If they are missing that foundational information, frustration and a distaste for mathematics may arise. At Latch Onto Learning, we support students of all ages and at a wide range of skill levels so they can progress in their mathematical thinking to the next level.