Put Numbers in Their Places

Put Numbers in Their Places lesson plan

Put large numbers in their places with this math game! Use Crayola® Color Switchers™ Markers to colorfully label ones, tens, hundreds, and thousands—or higher.

  • 1.

    We use numbers all the time, such as when we look for a house or work out how much we can buy. Numbers are made of digits, much like words are made with letters. Each digit has a value depending on its place in the number. For example, in the number 5,432 there are 5 thousands, 4 hundreds, 3 tens, and 2 ones (or units).

  • 2.

    <STRONG>Make your game cards. </STRONG>Work with a partner or small team to write your favorite two-, three-, and four-digit numbers on index cards with Crayola Color Switchers Markers. Write a different number on each card. Make at least 10 cards for each player.

  • 3.

    <STRONG>Choose color codes.</STRONG> Decide together which color you will assign to each place value. For example, ones could be orange, tens yellow, hundreds green, and thousands blue.

  • 4.

    <STRONG>Play!</STRONG> Shuffle the cards. Deal an equal number of cards to each person. Use Color Switchers Markers to label the places in each number on the cards you have. Invent your own games for the cards (see Adaptations).


  • Children develop a sense of how the number system functions.
  • Children identify the place value of digits in numerals.
  • Children write and label each digit of two-, three-, and four-digit numbers.


  • Self-assessment: Place labeled cards back in a pile. Shuffle them and deal them out again. Check the cards to see if they are labeled correctly. Save your cards to play more number games.