In the higher grades and algebra, you might see an equation like the one pictures above.
This is WRONG! WRONG! WRONG! If you read the equation, it reads as x is smaller than three and larger than 17. A simple way to explain these types of equations is by telling kids is that the arrows NEVER POINT TO THE RIGHT. When X is in the middle, both arrows point left.
This equation now reads X is bigger than 3 and smaller than 17. You could also tell the kids that the arrows are both always pointing at the smaller number (or number kid) to watch out for him.
I found these kids at www.clipart.com. If you can't draw, it is worth every penny to join this webspot because all of the clipart is free once you've joined. I googled for images of "number people," but nothing was out there. So, when I found lots of these kids with room on shirts for numbers, I thought I'd gather them and put them here for you to use.
For visual learners, the number kids make it easier to understand. I would stretch the larger numbers, if you copy them, to make them bigger. You could save each one separately as a jpg and add them to your Smartboard. The kids could write the numbers on them once the jpg is locked. If you don't have a Smartboard, you could print them out and laminate them. You could add the numbers with a grease pencil or overhead marker.
So, below are the number kids for you.