The Power of Ten

By Susan LoFranco on Apr 24, 2017

Student will compose and decompose whole numbers up to 999

  • Nemeth scientific notation 
  • Powers of Ten and how multiplication by 10's or division by 10's affects a number


  • Abacus


  • power of ten worksheetReview vocabulary: Exponent, Base Number, Scientific Notation, and Standard Form
  • With student review how using the power of ten helps in estimating and epressing very large or small numbers.  An example to use is     3.102 x 102  = 3.102 x 100 = 310.2.  An easier way to solve this problem process is to shift the decimal point 2 places to the right so 3.102 x 102 = 310.2 (every time you multiply the number by 10 you move the decimal one place to the right). By writing the problem as 3.102 x 102 we are writing the problem in scientic notation. If this is clear to the student consider the problem in reverse.  How would the number 4352.7 be written in scientific notation? The decimal point is moved to the left until it is between the ones and thenths place.  So in the number 4352.7 move the decimal point three places to the left to get 4.352.7.  The power of ten in this case is 103.  Practice this two more times with numbers of your choosing. Use an abacus or a place value chart (copy of chart attached) to help guide the student.
  • Once the student is confident, to reinforce the lesson, have them complete the attached Powers of Ten worksheet using the media of student's choice to record his/her response.  

power of 10 chart


power of 10 collage


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