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Negative numbers

  • Year group: Year 6
  • Term: Autumn
  • Topic: Negative numbers
  • Duration: 1 weeks
  • Keystage: KS2
  • Age Range: 10 to 11 yrs
  • Unit can be taught out of sequence: N
  • Week Range: 2

In this chapter, pupils solve problems in context, including those requiring them to calculate the interval across 0.

Pupils solve increasingly difficult problems involving the use of negative numbers in context. Unlike before, problems now include those requiring them to calculate intervals across 0. They may, for example, work out the difference between the temperature in two given cities.

In line with their learning about place value, pupils work with numbers up to 1 million.

 Download all negative numbers chapters as a PDF 

Resources for this topic

White Rose Maths

Negative numbers

This selection of resources cover counting backwards and forwards in negative numbers to problem solving with negative numbers.
By WRMaths

Negative numbers

Direct link to our Y6 scheme.
By WRMaths

Mathematics Mastery

Negative numbers

Mathematical discussion is a key element of the Mathematics Mastery programme.

Talk Tasks are a brilliant way of enabling pupils to develop their mathematical language, thinking, understanding and confidence.

This activity explores the concept of negative numbers.

• Talk tasks are best completed in mixed attainment pairs, with pupils taking turns to listen and construct arguments
• Emphasis is on discussion rather than the solution, encouraging pupils to use key language and talk in full sentences
• Ask pupils to prove their answers in a variety of ways, using the CPA approach to support mathematical understanding and number sense

Like what you see? Mathematics Mastery is a professional development programme for teachers with a mission to transform mathematics education in the UK.

This task is just a taster of the complete classroom resources we offer. We also provide in-depth development training, online CPD, specialist support and assessment tools.

We believe all elements of our programme are vital in creating lasting change – enabling every child to enjoy and succeed in mathematics.

Want to find out more? Check out our free resources and blogs or join an information session.
By Mathematics Mastery

Negative numbers

Select ‘View more’ for an accompanying video.

Enabling teachers to continuously develop their practice is a key element of the Mathematics Mastery Programme.

This CPD video provides step-by-step guidance on negative numbers.

Our videos aim to:

• Model teaching tips, techniques and clarify how to make connections between concrete, pictorial and abstract representations
• Support the teaching of different methods and concepts, rather than focusing on one method only
• Enhance subject knowledge and support non-specialists

Like what you see?

Mathematics Mastery is a professional development programme for teachers with a mission to
transform mathematics education in the UK.

This task is just a taster of the complete classroom resources we offer. We also provide in-depth development training, online CPD, specialist support and assessment tools.

We believe all elements of our programme are vital in creating lasting change – enabling every child to enjoy and succeed in mathematics.

Want to find out more? Check out our free resources and blogs or join an information session.

By Mathematics Mastery

Resources shared by teachers

Addition and Subtraction with Negative Numbers

A PowerPoint visual explaining the effects of adding and subtracting positive and negative numbers. The flag points to number you start at then depending which team has more people the flag will move - its all animated. Includes Questions and Answers.
There is also an extension, students must fill in the missing sign to make the sum correct. Answers provided.
By Jammin93

Difference in Temperatures Problem Solving Activity

Activity using clues about temperatures in British cities to label a map with 12 cities and their respective temperatures. Clues are in a random order so they could be cut up into cards if that helps, the solution shows the order to tackle them, so they could be re-ordered for weaker students. The map labels either contain a city name or temperature and the learner writes the missing information in as they go, except the last city, which has both pieces of information missing. The map allows some cross-curricular links with Geography (markers on map are my educated guess) and there is obviously a link with Literacy. This is suitable for individuals/pairs/groups and can be printed 1 or 2 to a page.
By Maths Tiger

Negative Numbers Board Game

This is a board game i created to consolidate learning after a few lessons on negative numbers. When used with the children they seemed to enjoy this and liked a challenge. Because of this challenge aspect i then told the children if they got an answer right they got a point and whoever had the most points at the end won. For middle ability children i gave them a mixture of the two sets of children. Enjoy!
By ellen1208

Negative Number Word Problems

These word problems get children to think about decoding and working out negative number word problems. There are 2 differentiated sheets. I created this resource for my year 4 class, but feel it could be used in higher key stage 2 year groups as well. If you find this a useful resource, please comment and recommend. Many thanks.
By n_neil_w

Negative Numbers Year 6 Extension Bank Statement Activity

This is 4 worksheets I used with my top set Numeracy group, it is very good for challenging them and making them think about negative numbers in a real life context.

By leesatre