The Year 200x

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  • Golden bead, numeral cards, chains of 100, 1000 (2 each)
  • First historical time line materials:  Two thousand chains, two hundred chains, thousand cube, hundreds, units as needed. Math quantity symbols for the current year: B. C. E./C.E. (B.C./ A.D) Time Line; Arrow labeled "This year"; Labels: "Before Common Era or Before Christ with B.C.E and B.C.on back; "Common Era and Anno Domini" with C.E. or A.D. on back and Cards with 1st - 21st on one side and I-XXI on the other.




1. "What year is this? 200_. "

  1. A child gets the numeral cards and corresponding quantity in golden bead material.
  2. The quantity is counted.
  3. The cards are arranged and the numeral is read.
  4. "We want to represent this quantity in a line. For each one thousand cube, we can use a long chain of one thousand."
  5. The children lay the two chains out (perhaps in a field) and count to 2000 by decades and puts the arrow 'this year' at the correct point.
  6. "But this is too long. Let's try another way."
  7. A chain of 100 is laid out.
  8. "We'll let each bead represent 10 years."
  9. The child counts by 10's and 100's until reaching the end of the chain.
  10. "This chain now represents 1000. We'll put this cube at the end to remind us".
  11. Another 100 chain is placed out and the children count by 10's until they reach 1990-2000.
  12. They place an arrow there with the numerical cards of this year.

2. "Why do we call this 200_?

  1. What happened 200_ years ago?
  2. They may come up with suggestions--the earth was created, life began.
  3. "All of those things happened many, many years before this time.
  4. Throughout the world, there are different calendars that people use.
  5. Each people bases the beginning of their calendar with an important event.
  6. The calendar that we use in the Western world was based on when they thought Jesus was born".
  7. Place a flame or a star at the point of the year '1'.
  8. This is where our own calendar started.
  9. "But there were many, many years before this time."
  10. Loose ten bars are laid out at the left side of the chain.
  11. "We could have many more ten bars because there are many, many years before Jesus was born. So many that these ten bars would go all the way through the school and out the door. The years before Jesus was born were called B.C. or Before Christ and the years from 0-present are called A.D. or Anno Domini, Latin for in the year of our Lord. Non-Christians call B.C. 'Before the Common Era or B.C.E.' and A.D. 'Common Era or C.E.'."

3. Layout with cards

  1. Now the chains are replaced with the time line strips.
  2. The green which is labeled B.C.E and B.C. stands for hope.
  3. The red which is labeled C.E. and A.D. stands for love.
  4. The star or flame can be at the two century ones.
  5. "Now we need to find out where to put the 'this year' arrow on this time line.On this time line, instead of representing one year at a time like we did with the thousand chain and 10 years at a time (or decades) like the hundred chains, each unit on this time line will represent a century, or 100 years."
  6. The 1st card in red is put down,"This is the 1st century in the Common Era or A.D."
  7. Then the 1st card in green is put down. " This is the 1st century Before the Common Era or B.C." The child puts down 2nd century C.E. and 2nd Century B.C.E., etc. up to the 20th century C.E. and B.C.E. Both ends of the time line should be arrows to show that time goes on in each direction.
  8. "When we write the numerals for the centuries, we can use Roman Numerals".
  9. Turn the cards over and the Roman Numerals are printed on them. (Extension: There can be another whole lesson with craft sticks making the Roman Numerals)
  10. The cards are turned over and read again.
  11. Use three period lesson for any confusion of names.

Control Of Error

Points Of Interest


  • To orient the child to historical time lines and dates.