Ladder Tower

Ladder Tower

Sample Lesson 2

From Early Childhood Activity Cards

Step One 

Have students take turns adding sections to the same tower.

Introduction: Show the students the concept of having a tower on each side and then having the lateral block joining the two to create the 'ladder'. 

  • Start with the rule, that one side has to have a single block, and on the other there has to be two blocks that make the same total.  
SumBlox Math Block Ladder Tower
SumBlox Ladder Tower

Step Two

Remove the rules.

  • Now remove the only rule that we had, but suggest that both sides can't be symmetrical.  Children will need to understand themselves that each side of the tower needs to be equal to continue to build. This will encourage them to construct numbers for themselves using various combinations.

Step Three

Open play

Encourage the children to continue to build as tall as they can. Competitive children can move on to adding up all the numbers to calculate the height of their tower. Then they can try to beat their old record the next time they play.

SumBlox Ladder Tower Open Ended Play



The main purpose of this activity is to provide students with practice breaking numbers into various parts to reinforce the concept that two smaller numbers can equal a larger number. This activity also encourages hand-eye coordination and team work.