Providing physical representations of numbers and math concepts helps activate mental processes. Learners understand more deeply through hands-on exploration, which requires but also develops fine motor skills. Manipulatives that have minimal visual distractions are most effective, supporting students' Attention and Inhibition as they practice the target math skills. Research has also found that manipulatives are effective when students are able to understand that concrete objects can represent abstract ideas, a developmental milestone often achieved by second grade.
Videos are chosen as examples of strategies in action. These choices are not endorsements of the products or evidence of use of research to develop the feature.
Learn how products such as DragonBox Numbers can allow learners to playfully explore digital manipulatives to strengthen their number sense. Through various games with the manipulatives, learners can build their understanding of Estimation, Cardinality, and Operations.