Math Story : Subtraction Without Borrowing

Bakers For A Day

One day, the kids get an opportunity to run a bakery for a day in Samper Town. 

“Wow! It would be so much fun. Cirho and I can bake the cupcakes. Triho and Squarho can manage the customers and cash counter”, suggests Cirha. Everybody takes their responsibilities and starts working.

“Where should I be?” they hear a voice. Oh! Uncle Math is here too. Amazing! 

Join us in the kitchen”, says Cirho. Uncle Math follows Cirho. 

The shop is running smoothly. Triho and Squarho are managing the customers well. 

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“I will rest for a while”, says Squarho. He quickly grabs a cupcake and opens it to eat. He throws the wrapper on the floor and starts eating.

“Squarho! It is our shop. If we only make it dirty, then why will the customers keep it tidy?” says Triho. He dislikes people who cannot keep their surroundings clean. Squarho understands now and picks up the wrapper to put it in the bin.

“I need 24 hot chocolate cupcakes”, says a customer. Triho quickly writes the order and hands it over to Cirha.“Order for 24 chocolate cupcakes”, she screams. Cirho and Uncle Math hear it loud and clear.

They quickly start working on the order. Cirho is filling the batter in the tray, Cirha is baking them, and Uncle Math is packing. What a great way of working efficiently as a team. “12 cupcakes are ready!” says Uncle Math.

“Great! So we need 1,2,3,4…ahh! How many more cupcakes to finish the order?” questions Cirha. She is still counting to find leftover cupcakes. Cirho is still confused.

On the other hand, the customer is getting upset with the delay caused in completing the order. Triho is trying hard to manage the situation. Cirha starts panicking now. ”Got it! We need 10 more cupcakes to complete the order. Am I right Uncle Math?” she says worryingly.

“No, dear. You got confused and mostly forgot to count correctly. I will tell you how many cakes will complete the order,” says Uncle Math and takes out his favourite gadget Mr Place Value from the pocket. 

Uncle Math 6 to 8 Years App Banner
Uncle Math 6 to 8 Years App Banner

“So we had to make 24 cupcakes, and 12 are ready. To find out the leftover cakes, what operation will we do?” he questions.

“Subtraction!” answers Cirho. Uncle Math smiles and asks, “And what numbers will we subtract?”

Cirha quickly answers, “Because the order was for 24 cakes and 12 are ready, we will subtract 12 from 24.” Uncle Math smiles again. Both of their answers are right.

He quickly inputs 24 and 12 in Mr Place Value. Soon after receiving the numbers as inputs, The gadgets separate the numbers into two columns as “Tens and Ones”. The number 25 is made of 2 tens and 5 ones. The number 12 is made of 1 ten and 2 ones. The minus sign on the gadget screen is shining bright.

“Alright! So we shall first subtract the ones. 4 is greater than 2 so we can easily subtract 4 – 2 =?” questions Uncle Math. “2” answers Cirho. “Now, we shall subtract the tens. Similarly, 2 is greater than 1 so we can easily subtract  2 – 1 = ?” He questions again. “1” answers Cirha.

“Perfect! So we need 12 more cakes to complete the order”, says Uncle Math. “Correct answers!” announces the gadget. 

Cirha and Cirho are overjoyed. They quickly fill the tray, bake and hand over the 13 cakes to Uncle Math. He then swiftly packs them and hands them over to Triho.

“Sorry for the delay. Here is your order!” says Triho while handing over the parcel. “They look so delicious!” says the customer. Despite the delay, he likes the service and thanks Triho and Squarho. The customer also places a new order of 45 cupcakes for the next day.

Triho and Squarho run to the kitchen and share the news of the advance order. Cirha, Cirho and Uncle Math are delighted. All of them hug each other and celebrate their teamwork.

“This would not have been possible without Uncle Math and Mr Place Value”, says Cirha. The quick method of subtraction helped the kids in completing the orders and managing their bakery so well. Squarho also learnt that change begins with oneself. He promises to keep his surroundings clean


We Learnt That…

  • To find out the leftover things, we should always subtract. 
  • To subtract using the place value gadget:
    1. Write the numbers in the Tens and Ones column
    2. Subtract the ones first
    3. Subtract the tens later
    4. Write the final answer.
  • Change starts with us, but it does not start until we do.

Let’s Discuss

  • What were we doing today?
  • How many cakes did the customer order?
  • How did Cirha find leftover cakes to complete the order?
  • “If we only make it dirty, then why will the customers keep it tidy?” What do you understand about this?
  • “Change starts with us, but it does not start until we do.” Do you agree? Why or why not?

Experience the immersive video version of this captivating story by clicking the link below, and let the excitement come to life :

Please refer this guide by Fun2Do Labs for teaching subtraction without regrouping to kids :