Back in November (has it really been that long?) I blogged about the Make a 10 strategy for addition. I included a little freebie that you can throw in a workstation to help students practice the strategy and develop fluency of harder facts by using facts they already know.
Another great strategy for tackling those harder facts, like 7 + 8, is the Using Doubles strategy. Students often easily learn their doubles (2 + 2, 3 + 3, 4 + 4, etc.). If your kiddos are still learning their doubles, check out this post for a fun kinesthetic way to practice. The Using Doubles strategy involves decomposing one addend to make a double with the other addend. For example 7 + 8 is the same as 7 + 7 plus 1 more. Double ten frames are great for exploring the strategy. Have students build each addend on a different ten frame. For example, 7 + 8 would look like this:
After you've introduced the strategy and students have had a chance to work with manipulatives to understand the strategy, it's time for a little independent practice! This little freebie includes a set of workstation cards and an "I Can " card for student directions. Have students record their work in their math journal for accountability and for a quick formative assessment.