Understanding Integers ~ Lesson 1
Introduction to Integers
Students will understand that:
Numbers can be located on the number line
Numbers have opposites
Numbers have value
Numbers can be positive or negative
Integers are all of the whole numbers and their
opposites, and zero.
Materials
•Whiteboard
•Smartboard or chalkboard
•Practice page #1
•Cards with numbers 1 to 20
and -1 to - 20
Teaching Actions:
1. Draw a large number line on the board where
0 is in the middle and 20 is on the right hand
side. Assign each student a number (1 to 20).
Have them randomly come up and put “x’s” on
the number line to show where their number is
located on the number line. Fill in any missing
numbers with class help.
Ask students “Why are these numbers on
different places on the number line?”
At this point it is okay to introduce the word
“positive number.”
Ask students: “Using the number line how can
you show on the number line that 8 and 2 have
different values?” Repeat with other numbers.
Now have students make up stories about their
numbers. For example, the number 14 could be
the number of cupcakes in a box.
07-15-10
20
0
Through class discussion
students should discover
that each number has a
different value because of its
position on the number line.
Students may show different
values by drawing arrows or
jumps on the number line.
Make sure students
understand that the point
on the number line doesn’t
show the value, the
distance from zero does.
Lesson 1
p. 1
Understanding Integers ~ Lesson 1
Teaching Actions:
2. Ask students “What is on the other side of the
0?”
This is a good time to introduce the words
“negative number” and integers if students
haven’t mentioned them yet.
with negative numbers. Lead the class into a
discussion about where we use negative
numbers in our lives. (loss of yards in football,
below sea level, temperatures, money)
Put a 20 on the number line. Have students
randomly come up and put “x’s” on the number
line to show where the opposite of their
previously assigned positive number is located
on the number line. Fill in any missing numbers
with class help.
Ask students “Why did you pick these places for
the numbers on the number line?” A possible
response would be +2 is 2 places away from 0
so 2 must be 2 places away from 0 on the
other side.) Be sure students come up with
the word opposite to describe negative
numbers compared to positive
Now have students make up stories about their
numbers. For example, the number 5 could be
a five-yard penalty in a football game for being
offside and +5 could be yards gained by
running.
3. Hand out Practice Page #1.
07-15-10
20
20
0
Make sure you correct any
number that is placed in the
wrong place.
Fill in any missing numbers
and point out that each
number has an opposite
and that 0 is not positive
or negative because it
doesn’t have an opposite.
•Exit activity on whiteboard,
index card, slip of paper.
Write the following numbers
on the board:
4, 9, 2, 0, 5, 3
Have students draw a
number line and place an “x”
where each number is
located.
Lesson 1
p. 2