Math manipulatives are physical objects used to explain an abstract concept. The objects can be moved, or manipulated, in order to prove an idea. For example, when students learn addition, a teacher might use manipulatives by giving each child a set of three small blocks and then giving them two more to demonstrate the concept of 3+2=5.
You've probably already seen lots of math manipulatives. Here are some common ones:
- Paper money
- Puzzle Cubes
- Algebra tiles
- Base 10 blocks
What does Mathnasium of Mt. Lebanon do with manipulatives? We use them. A lot! And this is why:
Manipulatives help kids prove ideas. It's one thing to memorize that 40 divided by 4 is 10. It's another thing to physically arrange beads into equal piles and prove that there are, indeed, 4 groups of 10 beads. This practice deepens understanding and lifts math off of the pages of a textbook and into the hands of a student.
Mathnasium instructors are using manipulatives with students all over Mount Lebanon, Saint Johns, Julington Creek, Durbin Crossing, Mandarin, CR 210.
One parent saw manipulatives being used at Mathnasium and said, "Mathnasium of MTLebanon is the best. They know how to keep kids engaged and interested in math." - J. L.
(Well thank you very much!)
What happens to a child's understanding of math when they use manipulatives? NSU explains it like this:
"It is important that today’s math teachers use math manipulatives to make math concepts concrete rather than abstract. The use of manipulatives provides teachers with a great potential to use their creativity to do further work on the math concepts instead of merely relying on worksheets. Consequently, students learn math in an enjoyable way, making connections between the concrete and the abstract."
Learning about place value can often be a vague concept. Using our manipulatives, kids are able to easily see the ones, tens, and hundreds values and be able to differentiate between them. Being able to see and touch versus just hearing about a topic helps us learn math!
Mathnasium of Mt. Lebo wants your child to learn to love math! Sign up now for a Complementary Assessment! Is your child ready to get started? Call us (412) 213-8696!