Guided Math: Must Have Manipulatives

When it comes to Guided Math, there is one thing you absolutely need. Manipulatives.

Okay, that’s lots of things.

But with so many different options available, it can be hard to pinpoint what exactly is and is not appropriate for a special needs classroom.

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Today I want to share with you my favorite manipulatives for Guided Math rotations. I’ve use all of these in my special needs classroom effectively and appropriately, so I know you will just love them too.

You may find some affiliate links within this post, but any and all opinions of the following Guided Math resources are simply my own and I have not received any form of compensation to share them with you.

1 // Big Money Magnets

These large money magnets are great for morning meetings AND Guided Math rotations. You can easily create a center using them on a whiteboard, the side of a filing cabinet, or on cookie trays.

2 // Unifix Cubes

You can literally use these cubes. for. anything… in any academic subject area. In regards to Guided Math, use them for counting, 1:1 correspondence, comparing numbers, more or less, shorter and longer, or even as sensory input during a lesson. #speakingfromexperience

Seriously, all the things.

3 // Magnetic Ten Frames

Before I purchased these at Lakeshore Learning last summer, I really didn’t think I needed them. They were on sale, so I bought them. Let me just tell you, you NEED this in your special needs classroom.

I really like this set because the dots are dual-sided, and the kids can use this for more concrete addition and subtraction.

4 // Judy Clocks

Judy Clocks are like a great pair of jeans… they never go out of style! I remember using these in elementary school 20+ years ago, and we are still using them in our classrooms today.

I love Judy Clocks because the kids have to physically make the hands on the clock. It helps them to understand all of the time that passes between the hours and minutes from one time on the clock to the next.

5 // Giant Magnetic Tangrams

Tangrams are great for 2D shape talk and for fraction units. But there giant ones… #nowords.

I love when a manipulative comes in a larger size because of our students with visual impairments.

6 // Hands-on Math Trays

These math trays are great for sorting, graphing, comparing, making patterns… and so many more concepts!

I like using these math trays for sorting and comparing our no bake recipes (the pictures of course!).

1 // File Folder Kits ( One ) ( Two ) ( Three )

File folder kits come in all topics… and they can be pretty pricey, but they are SO beneficial to our population of students. I suggest laminating the folders and all of the pieces, even if they come pre-laminated.

2 // Versatiles

Read my blog post here on how I use Versatiles in my classroom.

1 // Book Bins

My classroom would be a hot, unorganized mess without book bins and my color-coded system. If a student needs something, I can simply say, “Go get X out of your bin please!” and the student retrieves it.

I prefer book bins from ReallyGoodStuff because they have a lot of different colors, although Lakeshore Learning has debuted new neon colors recently.

prompt hierarchy lead magnet

What are your favorite manipulatives and resources to use during Guided Math? Tell us in the comments below!




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