[Numeracy 216] Re: Manipulatives--Research

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Susan Jones sujones at parkland.edu
Wed Feb 24 17:50:38 EST 2010

I've had some good results with virtual manipulatives with a very LD
student who struggles with making connections between symbols and
meaning. However, most of the virtual manipulatives make abstract leaps
and bounds... I have to prepare carefully and select carefully.

Back in the dark ages (1986) I researched math manipulatives in middle &
secondary applications... I put it online at

Susan Jones
Academic Development Specialist
Academic Development Center
Parkland College
Champaign, IL 61821
sujones at parkland.edu

>>> "Rachel Lyon" <rlyon at lyon.k12.nv.us> 02/24/10 3:45 PM >>>

Virtual manipulatives can work for some students. Once again, we are
faced with diversifying instruction to fit the needs of our students.
What works for some or even most doesn't work for all.

My daughter was 4 ½ could do multi digit addition, subtraction and
multiplication - using her 'frog and watching him jump on the number
line' - all with her eyes closed and imagination. Once introduced to
concrete manipulatives, she lost her frog and actually digressed in

Imagination, virtual, concrete, descriptions, manipulatives?! All can


From: numeracy-bounces at nifl.gov [mailto:numeracy-bounces at nifl.gov] On
Behalf Of Jean Stephens
Sent: Wednesday, February 24, 2010 10:14 AM
To: numeracy at nifl.gov
Subject: [Numeracy 213] Manipulatives--Research

I have been following the various discussions about using manipulatives
on the discussion list. As coordinator of the math/numeracy part of the
LINCS Basic Skills Collection, I was wishing that we had something in
our collection that addressed research on the use of manipulatives in
teaching math. Since we do not currently have anything on the
collection on this topic, I went searching on the web to see what might
be available.

I found an article that may be of interest to some of you: "Learning
Mathematics with Virtual Manipulatives" on the Center for Implementing
Technology in Education (CITEd) website at
http://www.cited.org/index.aspx?page_id=151. This article brings up the
whole new topic of using virtual manipulatives instead of concrete ones.
I would be interested in hearing comments from members of the group on
this method of teaching math with manipulatives.

Please note that at the end of the article there is information on
research in this topic. Although many of the research projects referred
to are pertaining to virtual manipulatives, there are some that deal
with concrete manipulatives.

I will submit this article for review and possible inclusion in our
collection. If anyone on this list knows of other articles online that
we might consider for the collection on manipulatives (or other topics),
please let me know either on or off the list. Thanks. Jean Stephens

Jean J. Stephens


865-567-0984 (cell)

Math/Numeracy Collection:

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