K-12 Teaching and Learning From the UNC School of Education

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Learning outcomes

The students will:

  • have an understanding of division.
  • practice listening/predicting skills as the book is read to them.

Teacher planning

Time required for lesson

2 hours


Technology resources

You will need a video projector or AverKey in order to show the PowerPoint presentation on division.


Students need to know their multiplication facts. Read The Doorbell Rang once for students so they are familiar with the story before starting the activity.


  1. Begin by selecting 13 volunteers to “act” as you are reading the story. Tell each of the students the name of the character that he or she will be. One student will be the doorbell ringer. (Instruct the doorbell ringer to ring the bell each time you read “as the doorbell rings.”) Instruct the actors/actresses to come up front when they hear their name in the book.
  2. Read The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins. Have two students start up at the front. These two students will have to divide the 12 cookies up between themselves. Each time the doorbell rings, more students come up. Each time students need to divide the cookies among themselves. As students divide these cookies up, you can demonstrate on the board how to model what they are doing (ex: Model 12 divided by 2).
  3. You may want to read the book the second time and have different students “act” this time so that everyone has the opportunity.
  4. Discuss with students what they have just done; model some problems on the board.
  5. Have students complete The Doorbell Rang worksheet. Students will use this sheet to model division as they are showing how many cookies each of the children got in the story each time that the doorbell rang.
  6. Closure review how to divide by presenting the PowerPoint presentation--this is interactive.


Students will be able to model division problems on their The Doorbell Rang worksheets.

Supplemental information

  • You many want to divide this plan into 2 days.
  • Overview of The Doorbell Rang by Pat Hutchins:
    In this tale, two children visit their grandmother who has made cookies to share. However, once they sit down to eat, the doorbell rings and rings and rings. Each time the children must divide the cookies among more and more people.

  • Common Core State Standards
    • Mathematics (2010)
      • Grade 3

        • Operations & Algebraic Thinking
          • 3.OAT.2Interpret whole-number quotients of whole numbers, e.g., interpret 56 ÷ 8 as the number of objects in each share when 56 objects are partitioned equally into 8 shares, or as a number of shares when 56 objects are partitioned into equal shares of 8...

North Carolina curriculum alignment

English Language Arts (2004)

Grade 3

  • Goal 2: The learner will apply strategies and skills to comprehend text that is read, heard, and viewed.
    • Objective 2.02: Interact with the text before, during, and after reading, listening, or viewing by:
      • setting a purpose.
      • previewing the text.
      • making predictions.
      • asking questions.
      • locating information for specific purposes.
      • making connections.
      • using story structure and text organization to comprehend.

Mathematics (2004)

Grade 3

  • Goal 1: Number and Operations - The learner will model, identify, and compute with whole numbers through 9,999.
    • Objective 1.03: Develop fluency with multiplication from 1x1 to 12x12 and division up to two-digit by one-digit numbers using:
      • Strategies for multiplying and dividing numbers.
      • Estimation of products and quotients in appropriate situations.
      • Relationships between operations.