5 Fun Ways to Teach and Practice Integers, Opposites, and Absolute Values

by ·

In my 6th grade math classroom, we're all about practicing math concepts with a creative and practical twist.

In this blog post, I'm going to give you the lowdown on 5 awesome activities for teaching integers, opposites, and absolute values.

First, why do I love teaching integers, opposites, and absolute values?

Because it’s easy to connect it to real life. Positive and negative integers are perfect for describing all kinds of situations, from elevations (are you above or below sea level?) to money (did you make a profit or loss?), and even to temperatures (are you above or below freezing?).

And it’s a very visual topic. You can plot positive and negative integers on number lines as you practice comparing and ordering. When solving for absolute value, you can visually represent the distance away from zero on a number line.

Now, onto the good stuff. Here are 5 fun ways to teach integers, opposites, and absolute values.

Want free resources?

Get my free resource library with digital & print activities—plus tips over email.

Join for free resources →

1) Get artsy with it — with visual guided notes with doodles and coloring!

Who says math lessons can't be colorful and creative?

Integers, Opposites & Absolute Value Guided Notes

These guided notes include steps for plotting integers on a number line, identifying opposites, calculating absolute values of rational numbers, and much more. Plus, there's plenty of opportunity for coloring and doodling, so your students won't get bored. Each guided note also includes mazes and color-by-number activities!

It covers the CCSS standards: CCSS 6.NS.C.5CCSS 6.NS.C.6.aCCSS 6.NS.C.6CCSS 6.NS.C.6.cCCSS 6.NS.C.7.aCCSS 6.NS.C.7

Compare & Order Integers & Absolute Values Guided Notes

Want to practice comparing and ordering integers and rational numbers instead? I got you!

This resource was created after I realized students need a way to visually compare integers using number lines.

It covers the CCSS standards: CCSS 6.NS.C.7CCSS 6.NS.C.7.aCCSS 6.NS.C.7.bCCSS 6.NS.C.7.cCCSS 6.NS.C.7.d

Also, if it’s the first time you’re teaching this topic, click here for a formal lesson plan on how to teach Integers, Opposites, and Absolute Values.

2) Try some digital self-checking pixel art.

Let your students work at their own pace with digital self-checking pixel art. As they type in the correct answers in the Google Sheets, magical pixels are unlocked to reveal parts of mystery images.

It's a fun, interactive way to practice math, and you can even put your students in small groups to help each other out.

There’s a version with integers, opposites, and absolute values. Another version focuses on comparing and ordering rational numbers.

3) Mix things up with Doodle Math - a twist on color by number!

If you have a chatty class, Doodle Math is perfect for getting them to practice math while giving them some peace and quiet. As students solve math problems, they unlock doodle patterns to fill in the corresponding sections of the image. It's a great way to get students engaged and focused.

Doodle Math activities are great for sub plans or homework as well since they are self-checking.

As a previous buyer said, “This activity is fantastic. The students really liked the doodling as a change of pace to a traditional worksheet.”

4) Get competitive with Kahoot, Blooket, or Quizziz.

Who doesn't love a little friendly competition? These game-based platforms are perfect for getting your students excited about math and practicing their skills in a fun way.

Kahoot has activities for definitions and drilling absolute value, Blooket has activities for comparing integers, and Quizziz has quizzes for real-life applications of integers.

5) Give your students some choice.

Let your students choose between 2-3 different activities to work on for the day.

It's a great way to promote independence and responsibility, and it gives your students some control over their learning. Plus, you can even offer incentives like no homework for the day if the class stays on task and earns enough positive marks. Students go wild (in a good way) for this type of incentive!

Get all the resources by grabbing the Integers, Opposites, Absolute Value Digital and Print Bundle.

Integers, opposites, and absolute value activities

So there you have it, 5 awesome activities for teaching integers, opposites, and absolute values. Don't forget to check out my Integers, Opposites, Absolute Value Digital and Print Bundle to take your lessons to the next level.

Ping Headshot

Hi, I'm Ping!

I spent 7 years in the classroom working to make math fun and relevant in middle school, by integrating math, art, and technology. I started Congruent Math to share this all with you.

About Congruent Math

More to read

Want more ideas and freebies?

Get my free resource library with digital & print activities—plus tips over email.

Join for free resources →