8 Winning Strategies to Improve Addition Fact Fluency

If you’re a K-2 teacher, I’m sure you already know how important it is to build addition fact fluency. By the end of 2nd grade, students should, students should be able to quickly recall addition facts within 20. This means students should be able to recall answers in a matter of 2-3 seconds.

You might be thinking that timed addition fact fluency tests are the answer, but that can create anxious, frustrated students. The last thing we want is for students to have a negative attitude toward math.

Instead, we teach students strategies that will help them quickly recall basic facts. Then, we give them opportunities to practice through games and activities!

Today I’m sharing 8 addition fact fluency strategies to help your students build automaticity. Take the time to introduce the strategies one at a time, giving students the opportunities to practice each one.

8 Addition Fact Fluency Strategies

1.) Zero Facts
Any number plus 0 equals the same number.

2.) Count Up

These facts are adding 1, 2, or 3. Students should put the largest number in their head and count up from it.

3.) Friends of 10

When these numbers are together, they always add to 10. For example, 8 + 2, 6 + 4, 3 + 7, etc.

Addition Fact Fluency Strategies, 8 posters
Addition Fact Fluency worksheets
4.) Doubles Facts

Doubles facts are adding the same number to itself. For example, 2 + 2, 3 + 3, 4 + 4, etc.

5.) Doubles Plus One

With this strategy, students double the number and add one more. For example, to add 4 + 5, students would solve 4 + 4 + 1.

6.) Plus Ten

When 10 is added to a number, the tens place increases by 1. Examples of this strategy include problems like 10 + 6, 10 + 8, 10 + 2, etc.

7.) Adding Nine (Bridge to 10)

Whenever students need to add 9, they can first add 10 and then take one away. For example, if 10 + 5 = 15, then 9 + 5 = 14.

8.) Turn Around Facts

Even if you flip the addends, the sum will stay the same. For example, 2 + 3 is the same as 3 + 2.

Addition Fact Fluency Activities

Addition fact fluency games are one of the best ways to get students involved in practicing math facts. Unlike timed tests where students are quickly solving as many problems as they can in a minute, students are playing board games, matching games, puzzles, and more to practice their facts.

When teaching 2-digit addition strategies, I started using “strategy friends” to help students remember each one (see here), so I decided to incorporate the same thing with addition facts! 

Addition fact fluency flashcard games
Addition fact fluency math centers for doubles and count on
doubles dash board game

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