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Elementary School Math Tips

Elementary School Math Tips

Tiffani Chin (Founder/Executive Director, EdBoost Learning Center) gives expert video advice on: How can I help my child understand math concepts?; How can I help my child understand "fractions"?; How can I help my child understand "decimals"? and more...

What are "manipulatives" in math?

"Manipulatives" in math is a broad term that in math applies to any tangible item you can use to demonstrate math concepts. If you go to the teacher supply store you see lots of little bears or little animals for this purpose but it can be anything. Most manipulatives are expensive and could be easily replaced with something much simpler that you have at home, a manipulative is anything tangible that can be used to demonstrate math concepts. I often encourage parents if they're trying to demonstrate with their kids that pennies are great. We often have lots of pennies hanging around. If your child has a lot of toy soliders, match box cars or other little toys in large numbers, these work well. My baby has lots of dishes, you can use anything that you can count, that you can add and you can subtract. If you have a child who's really into, say, food, cookies work really well, or jelly beans, M&Ms, Cheerios, you can use whatever will capture their imagination the smallest bit. As long as you don't mind throwing away the manipulatives afterwards because you're going to handle everything a lot.