Short Blocks

Maths Year 4 Autumn Addition and Subtraction (A)

Each unit has everything you need to teach a set of related skills and concepts.

Partitioning and column addition (suggested as 3 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Show a grid (see resources) and model adding two numbers using partitioning into 10s and 1s. Write 137 + 19, 178 + 31, 125 + 26, 154 + 27 and 22 + 195 on the board. Discuss how to do each one, using partitioning for all except the first, where adding 20 then subtracting 1 is best.
Group Activities
Use the ‘Make 100’ in-depth problem-solving investigation below as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
-- Create and add 3-digit and 2-digit numbers, investigating finding totals with different criteria.

Day 2 Teaching
Display 324 + 439. Children work in pairs and use the written method to find the answer on their whiteboards. Note/share different strategies. Explain that today we focus on compact written addition. Model this, emphasising leaving a space above the answer for writing extra numbers (‘carry’ digits).
Group Activities
-- Add pairs of 3-digit numbers using compact written addition.

Day 3 Teaching
Display 592 + 235. Children use compact written addition on their whiteboards. Clarify any mistakes. Children then use this strategy to add three 3-digit numbers. Display:


Children calculate the total.

Group Activities
-- Create and add three 3-digit numbers using compact written additions.
-- Use compact written addition to add three 3-digit numbers with ‘carries’ in different columns.

You Will Need

  • ‘2-digit + 2-digit grid with missing totals’ (see resources)
  • 1–9 dice or 1–9 digit cards
  • ‘Adding 3-digit and 2-digit numbers’ (see resources)
  • ‘Special magic squares’ (see resources)
  • Calculators
  • 0–9 digit cards
  • Place value cards

Mental/Oral Maths Starters

Day 1
Count on in 10s from any 3-digit number (pre-requisite skills)

Day 2
Add any pair of 2-digit multiples of 10 (pre-requisite skills)

Day 3
Add three 1-digit numbers (pre-requisite skills)


Day 1
Add pairs of 2-digit numbers.
Find missing numbers in a 2-digit + 2-digit addition grid.

Day 2
Use compact addition to add 3-digit numbers.

Day 3
Solve word problems with adding three 3-digit numbers.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

  • Complete these additions mentally with only the answer written!
    78 + 127 = ? and 348 + 39 = ?
    Use a different method for each one and explain both your strategies.
  • Write the missing numbers in this calculation
  • If 378 is subtracted from a number to leave 284, what was the number?
  • Add 375 + 528 + 194 using expanded column addition.

In-depth Investigation: Make 100
Given a pattern of four one-digit numbers, children attempt to make a total of exactly 100.

Extra Support

Split and Add
Adding 2-digit numbers using partitioning

Collect 'em Up!
Adding 2-digit numbers using partitioning (total more than 100); Beginning to add 3-digit numbers (total less than 1000)