Sometimes it's the smallest things that help a child make a breakthrough. I teach a 3rd grade general ed class in a high-need community. I have 4 special ed students and more than half of my students are English Language Learners (ELLs).
Most of my 3rd graders are at least one grade below level in math. My students struggling the most lack a mastery of basic math facts (6+4, 9-3). Unless they can understand these fundamentals, they will not be able to catch up. For all of my students, telling time and counting money is very challenging.
Through the use of stamps, magnets, dice and other hands on materials math can be accessible. More than that, math can be fun! By showing students another way to demonstrate addition, or allowing them to manipulate the hands of a clock, or count out money on a board, they will have the best chance at learning these difficult concepts.
By allowing students to encounter these concepts - from simple addition to telling time - through the use of hands on materials you will open a door for my students who are stuck feeling frustrated and lost for 90 minutes of everyday. You will make it possible for my students to attack math in a way that fits their learning styles best. With your help math will be fun for all of my students!
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