In this "take-away" example, illustrated below, Kaden starts his subtraction problem with 10 counters.
|10 sticks to start with. He counted the sticks and entered 10 on the calculator.|
|Take away 7 sticks.|
|Entering "take away"|
|(take away) 7|
|Here, Kaden counts the remaining sticks of which there are 3|
|And he presses the "equals" button to check the answer he got by counting the sticks.|
Most six year old children benefit from doing problems like these "hands on" by which I mean using actual counters and moving them together (for addition) and apart (for subtraction) and getting their answers by counting. The calculator is a fun way to check their work.
If you have a tablet computer, consider using one of the free calculator apps instead of a regular calculaor. They're bigger and brighter.