Number Bonds

I’m not talkin’ finance, folks—I’m talking about a nifty math tool. If you’re unfamiliar with number bonds, they look like the one shown. A number bond shows a whole number and its parts. It can be used for composing and decomposing numbers, for adding, for multiplying, and mnumberbondore. Are number bonds a part of your math instruction? Please share!

Always interested,


PS: For more about number bonds, check out Math Coaches Corner.


3 thoughts on “Number Bonds

  1. Yes, I am familiar with number bonds. Singapore Math seems to have been credited for this, but “number bonds” have been around for a long time. They are simply the basic math facts written in another form. The same is true for math fact triangles, or as some would like to call them, “triangle flashcards.” These pre-date number bonds, but they are the same concept as number bonds. I used math fact triangles at least 25 years ago.. I found the idea back then in either “Mathematics Around Us”, copyright 1975, Scott ,Foresman and Company or Heath Mathematics, copyright 1979, DC Heath and Company. Everyday Math was not the first to come up with these. Education has a way of
    “recycling” used ideas. But that’s OK–as long as they work. I like number bonds, but I like the basic facts, too!

  2. I teach pre-kinder, and I also work with kinder students who are having difficulty in their grade level. I have not seen number bonds. I’ve seen that same concept presented different ways, though.

    Are number bonds a part of common core? (We don’t have common core in Texas.)

  3. Great question, Ruth! Number bonds have been around for quite some time and as Margo mentioned are used in the math curriculum Singapore Math. Number bonds can be used with any math curriculum and are a great tool for helping students understand how to take numbers apart (decompose) and put them together (compose). I do believe the awareness and usage of number bonds has increased with the implementation of the Common Core State Standards.

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