Nothing says summer quite like watermelon juice dribbling down your chin!
While National Watermelon Day might be on August 3rd, you can use these watermelon activities to boost math skills any day. I created this set of free hands-on watermelon seed activities to help you teach number sense and place value without getting sticky!
There are activities for the quantities 1-10, 11-19, 11-99, and 100-999. These treasure reports represent a more structured approach than counting collections. Both are valuable math routines.
You will need to provide small counters- black beans, black pony beads, or black buttons (1/2 inch or smaller if uniform in size) to represent the watermelon seeds. A bag of black beans will cost the least. I purchased a bag of 580 black pony beads for less than $5 and a bag of 130 mixed size (3/8, 1/2, and 5/8 inch) black buttons for around $2.
Your students can scoop the counters from a container with measuring spoons for quantities 1-99. The spoons should not be used as a level, accurate measuring tool, just as a way to create a collection to count. You can also prepare bags/ cups with selected quantities beforehand. I found 3 X 4-inch plastic bags that zip at a craft store. Condiment cups with lids will also work.
Please note, the counters that will fit with these activities are small. Be sure your students have the necessary fine motor skills.
Now go ahead and scroll down to the number range(s) that address your students’ instructional needs.
1) Watermelon Seed Treasure Reports for 1-10
Help your students to connect counting to cardinality and to represent a number of objects with a written numeral.
Just print one half-page recording sheet for each participating student and provide counters.
First, count the watermelon seeds. Then, write to record how many. Finally, draw the seeds on the watermelon slice.
2) Numbers 11-19
Introduce, practice, or review decomposing numbers from 11-19 into ten ones and some more ones with this activity. Have your students record the results by drawing the seeds and writing an equation.
Simply print one copy of the recording sheet with two watermelon slices for each participating student and provide counters.
Students count the watermelon seeds. Then, they put 10 seeds on one slice and the extra ones on the other slice. They record how many as 10 plus some more. And finally, they draw the seeds on the slices.
You might also like this One Less One More Watermelon Seeds resource for quantities 1-10 available for purchase in my TpT store.
3) Watermelon Seed Treasure Reports for 11-99
Bolster your students’ understanding of the relationship between the digits in a two-digit numeral and the number of tens and ones. Provide optional practice with expanded form, rounding to the nearest ten, and counting by tens off a decade number.
These treasure reports may be completed with the whole class (typically with partners) or a small group. After it has been introduced, it can also be an independent math station.
There are five different recording sheets. Choose the ones that best fit the instructional needs of your students. Print one for each student or pair of students. Provide counters.
In addition, you will need to provide a way for students to organize their groups of ten counters. Try ten frames, ten-rod mats, small cups, or small cupcake liners. Find free printable templates for ten frame and ten-rod mats in my TpT store. (Check out the free seasonal treasure reports while you’re there.) You can also use the watermelon slice organizer mats included in this free resource.
Read this blog post for a more thorough description of treasure reports with tens and ones.
Your students can draw circles or semi-circles (watermelon slices) to represent groups of ten. They write 10 on each. They can draw dots or watermelon seeds for the ones.
Follow-up with this Watermelon Tens and Ones place value resource.
4) Numbers 100-999
Help your students make the connection between the digits in a three-digit numeral and the number of hundreds, tens and ones. Give practice with number words and expanded form along with determining one, ten, and one hundred less than and more than a given number.
This activity is similar to the one for numbers 11-99. Use the watermelon slice organizing mats to hold 10 groups of 10 seeds. The counters can be put in small cups first with the cups then organized on the mat or placed directly on the watermelon slices.
Print one recording sheet for each student or pair/ group of students working together. Provide prepared counters in containers.
Students can draw rectangles and write 100 on each to represent groups of one hundred. They can draw circles or semi-circles (watermelon slices) to show groups of ten and write 10 on each. They’ll draw dots or watermelon seeds for the ones.
Try Watermelon Cuties Place Value Activity for Hundreds, Tens, and Ones as another way to engage your students.
Click the highlighted words, Watermelon Seed Treasure Reports, to download your copy of the four free activities. Enjoy!
Title photo image is by YuMyart.