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Addition Strategies For Kids

Learning addition strategies helps kids learn to add the faster more efficient way.  I created 31 pages of addition strategies worksheets to help kids learn these very useful skills.

Addition Strategies For Kids: Counting Up, Adding 8, Adding 9, Doubles, Near Doubles, Doubles 2 Away, Grouping by 10's, Number Bonds of 10. Also, which addition strategy would work best worksheets.

Why I Created These Addition Strategies Worksheets

The short answer is I saw a need.

I had spent quite some time with my daughter mastering addition.  She’s pretty good at it but there is one area in particular where I struggled to get her to naturally understand.

When doing mental addition, there are many ways to come up with the answer, but some ways are definitely more efficient and much faster than other ways.  As a simple example, 4 + 25.  When adding in one’s head, perhaps using fingers to help, adding 4 to 25 would be much faster (26, 27, 28, 29) than adding 25 to 4 (5, 6, 7, … 24, 25).

As I’m with my daughter most often during math, I often steer her towards a good strategy for the question.  But I wanted her to be able to pick the best strategy herself.  To do that I sat down and created some math curriculum that just needed to be made: Addition Strategies for Kids.

Here is a preview of some of the strategies taught:

Counting Up Strategy

An addition strategy for kids. A "Counting Up" strategy worksheet.

Adding 9 Strategy

Adding 9 is another fun strategy that will be helpful for kids to know.  Since different kids learn differently, I have 4 different methods for doing the Adding 9 strategy.  Here is a preview of just one of them:

An addition strategy for kids. "Adding 9" strategy worksheet.
An addition strategy for kids. “Adding 9” strategy worksheet.

Adding 8 Strategy

The “Adding 8 Strategy” is taught 4 different ways as well.  They will learn something from each method, but in the end they will choose whichever method they like best.

An addition strategy for kids. "Adding 8" strategy worksheet. This method involves adding 10 and then subtracting 2.


Learning doubles is an important one, because once you know the doubles, you’re able to use that knowledge as a basis for not only adding doubles but near doubles.

An addition strategy for kids: "Adding Doubles" printable worksheet.

Doubles + / – 1 Strategy

An addition strategy for kids. "Adding doubles plus or minus 1" strategy worksheet. Questions like 8 + 7 and 11+12 could be easily answered using the doubles plus or minus one strategy.

Doubles Two Away Strategy

An addition strategy for kids. "Adding doubles two away" strategy worksheet. Questions like 9 + 7 and 11 + 13 could be easily answered using the doubles two away strategy.

Friends of 10 / Number Bonds of 10

Knowing well, the numbers that add up to 10 is also a very important skill to know when doing addition.  Learning the friends of 10 (or number bonds of 10) are also highlighted in this addition strategies for kids printable .pdf.

This 31 page .pdf of addition strategies worksheets is now available for $3.99 in my store.

Jacqueline Leone

Monday 11th of October 2021

Hi Melanie, can you send me the answer key to the "Counting Up Strategy" worksheet?


Tuesday 21st of July 2020

We've got our little girl learning at home. This is helpful. Glad that we came to this page through Pinterest.


Wednesday 21st of September 2016

Is this available for download or purchase? I am desperately looking for something to help my son and this looks like it would be a good fit.


Melanie Thomas

Thursday 22nd of September 2016

Hi Ginger, I will have it up in the next week or so. Thanks for your interest.


Tuesday 24th of May 2016

This is a fantastic resource! (I got it in the Bundle Sale) have anything like it for multiplication?

Melanie Thomas

Tuesday 24th of May 2016

Thank you :). And not yet, but soon :P. The next product I will be working on will be something that helps kids learn and master multiplication, in a fun kid friendly way.

Bekki@a better way to homeschool

Thursday 19th of May 2016

Great ideas! It's so important to master those facts!!