Lesson 5: Comparing Big Numbers


Activity 1: Comparing Numbers in the Millions

Give your child the baggies of M&Ms that you prepared during the Introduction activity, and ask, "Which baggie has a greater amount?" After your child answers the question, give him the "Which Has More?" sheet, and tell him to read the sheet and complete it as directed. Explain that he should be careful not to mix up the M&Ms in the different baggies.

Your child should find the following:
Baggie #1: 1,474,121
Baggie #2: 1,439,861
Baggie #1 has a greater amount.
Student Activity Page

Activity 2: U.S. City Populations

Show your child the "U.S. City Populations for 2019" sheet. Say, "These are numbers that show how many people lived in cities around our country in 2019. The cities are ranked in order from the cities with the greatest number of people to those with the smallest number of people."
Student Activity Page
As your child looks at the data provided on the sheet, pose the following questions. When answers require numbers, make sure that he reads them correctly:
  • How many cities have more than one million people? (11)
  • How many of those cities are in Texas? (4)
  • Which city is ranked #17? (Indianapolis, Indiana)
  • How many people does it have? (863,771)
  • Why is Chicago ranked higher than Houston? How can you explain this using the numbers provided? (because it has more people, Chicago's population has 6 in the hundred thousands place and Houston's has 3 in the hundred thousand's place)
Now, give your child the "Working With U.S. City Populations" sheet, and tell him to complete it as directed. When he has finished this activity, he should save the "U.S. City Populations for 2019" sheet for an activity in the next lesson.

Answer Key:

  1. Write the population of Phoenix, Arizona, in expanded form. (1,000,000+700,00+10,000+1,000+300+50+6)
  2. Which three populations in the top ten have 9 in the thousands place? Name the cities. (Chicago, Houston, Dallas)
  3. Which cities have populations greater than 2 million? (New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston)
  4. Write the population of Austin, Texas, in word form. (one million one thousand one hundred four)
  5. Write > or < between the cities in each pair to show how their populations compare.
    Los Angeles > San Diego
    Fort Worth < New York City
    Philadelphia > San Antonio
    Dallas < Chicago