How to Skip Count

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  • 0:00 What Is Skip Counting?
  • 0:36 Skip Counting by 2
  • 2:50 Skip Counting by 3
  • 4:14 The Process
  • 4:45 Lesson Summary
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Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Yuanxin (Amy) Yang Alcocer

Amy has a master's degree in secondary education and has taught math at a public charter high school.

In this lesson, you will learn how you can skip count. Find out how to count by twos and by threes, and see how you can skip count by any given number.

What Is Skip Counting?

To skip count means to count by adding the same number each time to the previous number. Knowing how to skip count is an excellent way to remember your multiplication facts. If you look at a number line, you will see why the name 'skip counting' works. If you take your pencil and start at 0, and then draw arches from 0 to the next number and so on, you will see that your pencil skips from number to number. If you drew your number line on the ground, you would literally have to skip over them to jump from number to number. Let's take a closer look at the process of skip counting.

Skip Counting by 2

Let's begin by looking at skip counting by 2. The definition of skip counting tells you that you need to keep adding the same number to your previous number. So, if we start at 0, our next number would be 0 + 2 = 2; then comes 2 + 2 = 4. What's after 4? 4 + 2 = 6; then comes 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, etc.

So, we have a list that goes 0, 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 16, 18, 20, etc. Do you notice a pattern here? The pattern is that the end digits follow a pattern. The digits 0, 2, 4, 6 and 8 keep repeating. Once your last digit is 8, it starts all over again with 0, then 2 and so on. The digits before the last increase by 1 with each round. In other words, the digit in the tens place grows by 1 after each round.

When you are skip counting, it is possible to begin with any number. You could start with the number 1 and skip count by 2. In this case, your first number is 1. Your next number is 1 + 2 = 3. The number after that is 3 + 2 = 5; then comes 5 + 2 = 7; then comes 7 + 2 = 9. After 9, you get 9 + 2 = 11; then 13, 15, 17, 19, 21, etc. You might have noticed a pattern here, too. If you start skip counting by 2 from the number 1, your end digits repeat by following the pattern 1, 3, 5, 7 and 9.

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