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I usually use base ten blocks because expanded form breaks a number apart by place value. I build the number (ie 361) using the blocks as 3 hundreds, 6 tens and 1 ones. Sometimes we draw the amount using symbols for the blocks (square for 100s, line for 10s, dot for 1s). Then, we write it as an equation 361 = 300 + 60 + 1. That is the expanded form.
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