Prime/Composite Numbers

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Most students understand the difference between an even and an odd number.  However, they often will use the difference to believe that odd and even parallel prime and composite numbers.  This short lesson helps students distinguish the difference between prime and composite numbers, and how knowing and identifying them can help them with mathematical operations.  It is important for students to explain why prime and composite numbers are not the same as odd and even numbers.  The students may be used in conjunction with a lesson related to factoring.

Prime/Composite Numbers Lesson Plan Includes:

  • Full Teacher Guidelines with Creative Teaching Ideas
  • Instructional Content Pages about Prime/Composite Numbers
  • Hands-on homework activities giving students practice with Prime/Composite Numbers
  • Answer Keys
  • Common Core State Standards
  • Many Additional Links and Resources
  • Built for Grades 4-6 but can be adapted for other grade levels.

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Description

Most students understand the difference between an even and an odd number.  However, they often will use the difference to believe that odd and even parallel prime and composite numbers.  This short lesson helps students distinguish the difference between prime and composite numbers, and how knowing and identifying them can help them with mathematical operations.  It is important for students to explain why prime and composite numbers are not the same as odd and even numbers.  The students may be used in conjunction with a lesson related to factoring.

Sample classroom Procedures: 

  1. Ask students: What are numbers?  What are they used for?  Why are numbers different?  How can numbers be classified?
  2. Allow for responses and discussion. Ask students:  What are factors of numbers? (Use as a review of factors.)
  3. Allow for responses and discussion. What is another way numbers can be classified by using their factors?
  4. Allow for responses and discussion. Introduce the terms- Prime and Composite.
  5. Distribute Prime/Composite Numbers content pages. Read and review the information with the students.  Allow students the opportunity to identify prime and composite numbers by demonstrating a factor tree.  Save the final question for the lesson closing.  Use the additional resources to enhance understanding.
  6. Distribute Activity page. Read and review the instructions.  Pair students for the game.  Distribute scissors and container.  Give students sufficient time to play the game one or more times.  Circulate through the room to ensure students remain on task and to settle disputes.
  7. Distribute Practice page. Check and review the students’ responses.
  8. Distribute the Homework page. The next day, check and review the students’ responses.
  9. In closing, ask students: What are your favorite prime and composite numbers?  Why?
  10. Allow for responses and discussion and encourage students to be specific about the reasons for their favorite numbers.

Common Core State Standards: 

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.4.OA.B.4

None for Grade 5 and 6

Class Sessions (45 minutes): 1 – 2 class sessions

Additional Resources: 

Many more teaching resources in Download!

Want more math resources? Check out our other Math Lesson Plans!

Additional information

Grade Level

4th Grade, 5th Grade, 6th Grade

Subject

Math