What is Multisensory Math?

Multisensory math is a three-dimensional sequential mathematical learning technique. Multisensory math programs can help anyone, particularly those who struggle with math.


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Orton-Gillingham Approach in a Math Setting

An Orton-Gillingham method is a multimodal approach to literacy teaching. It involves integrating auditory, visual, sensory, and kinesthetic components to enable primary school students to describe the connection between language and letters or words.

Multisensory math is based on the same concepts as traditional mathematics. However, learning and teaching a new concept involves touch, sight, hearing, and movement. This method was developed and improved upon us by Marilyn Zecher, M.A., CALT, a certified academic language therapist and multisensory math specialist, speaker, and former classroom demonstration instructor. She used and integrated the Orton-Gillingham math with scientific proof approaches based on neuroimaging research and guidelines from the NCTM and what works clearinghouse.

Zecher prioritizes math language, highlighting the need for teaching language throughout the development of concepts and techniques for application. Multisensory math techniques, for example, combines the Concrete, Representational, and Abstract (CRA) teaching sequence with expressive language to help students understand basic math ideas more effectively.

Students who use the multimodal math method must practice skills regularly and learn new ideas via CRA.

Touch (Concrete) – Touch is the centerpiece of this multimodal math concept. Multimodal maths tutors in New Jersey utilize physical items to demonstrate concepts or numbers, such as fractions, which are shown by breaking apart foam objects (or using other manipulatives).

Representational (Drawing) – Representational modalities are introduced after the physical or tactile teaching modalities. Students are encouraged to develop visual representations of the information they have taught using the multisensory math approach. It also allows students to find a connection and share their answers.

Students will move on to the abstract or symbols sequence after completely comprehending the multisensory math lesson plans provided and worked upon during Concrete and Representational. Teachers have always taught basic math courses using solely abstract ideas (numbers and symbols). While this has succeeded some youngsters, others find it challenging to comprehend mathematical concepts without a physical or visual representation.

Connecticut Multisensory Math Tutor, Brooklyn Letters

Elementary Math Concepts that Learners Should Master

According to Zecher, students in basic math must understand four conceptual boundaries that serve as the basis for subsequent arithmetic levels. These are their names:

  • Pattern Recognition and Subitizing – The ability to quickly recognize quantity, also known as subitizing, is a crucial principle and one of the mathematical foundations. The most efficient method to measure quantity is via patterns. It is necessary to be able to see numbers to have a strong number sense. It's ets the stage for increased operational fluency and a grasp of numerical connections. Recognizing dice patterns demonstrates alternation: the number or amount can be conceptualized visually without counting or touching each dot. Similarly, it is critical to acknowledge numerical relationships and comprehend that numbers may be deconstructed or broken down (8 into 3 and 5 or 2 and 6).
  • Place Value – Using craft sticks to teach place value is an excellent method to use multimodal teaching approaches. Learners, for example, may notice the amount changing and feel a greater mass as the number increases. Similarly, it assists students in differentiating between a number’s standard (the number’s name = 125) and extended form (which is made up of = 100 + 20 + 5).
  • Distributive Property refers to a learner’s capacity to act on larger quantities while knowing that such amounts may be broken down or decomposed and then worked on. Think about the number 15 multiplied by three. First, students must grasp that the number 15 may be split into two parts: ten and five. They may then distribute (multiply) three and add the results to get 15 x three.
  • What exactly is ONE, and what are its many monikers? – This is similar to the idea that every number written over itself equals one. As a result, multiplying or dividing by one affects the composition of the amount rather than the amount itself.
Connecticut Multisensory Math Tutor, Brooklyn Letters

Getting Started on Multisensory Elementary Math Techniques

Multisensory methods were originally introduced by literacy and reading professionals. We then generalized these multimodal methods to teaching mathematics.

It is important to capitalize on a student’s existing abilities. After then, the CRA technique can be used to teach new topics. Manipulatives are required for multimodal math teaching, particularly in primary school, but they do not have to be costly. Here are some examples of frequently used items:

  • Craft sticks
  • Beads and string
  • Base ten blocks
  • Interlocking cubes
  • Color tiles
  • Foam stickers
  • Flat marbles
  • Dice/Dominoes (only up to six)

Here are some multisensory math strategies that a multisensory math teacher in Connecticut recommends:

  • Visualizing fundamental operations like addition and subtraction using manipulatives such as beads, color tiles, or blocks is great to teach them. Furthermore, by seeing how amounts change, young students get an understanding of how mathematical operations operate. Visualization also aids children’s understanding of quantities and the development of number sense.
  • Children might even get a physical and tactile picture of measurements and characteristics by building forms out of cubes or tiles.
  • Drawing math problems is an excellent method to teach hands-on multisensory math activities since it allows students to demonstrate their reasoning and the idea they have learned.
  • Children can “feel” the values of numbers by tapping out numbers. Furthermore, it aids pupils in comprehending and connecting symbols and real numbers.
  • Songs can be used to help and support students in remembering mathematical concepts.
  • Play and games are incorporated by including movement in mathematics.
  • To teach regrouping and place value, use bundling sticks or coffee stirrers. This may also be accomplished using base ten blocks.
  • A hundred chart is a fantastic method for teaching youngsters about number connections.
  • Fractions are introduced and taught by slicing pizza into pieces. When you cut up a paper or cardboard pizza, students may be able to see fractions when they pick pieces.

Here’s additional information about multimodal math:

  1. Free, ready-to-use classroom resources for all students
  2. Applying the Orton-Gillingham Approach to Math Lesson Planning
  3. ASDEC Multisensory Math I Course
  4. Math Print and Digital Resources
  5. XtraMath® is an online math fact fluency program and App that helps students develop quick recall and automaticity of their basic math facts.
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Connecticut Multisensory Math Tutor, Brooklyn Letters

Our Connecticut (CT) multisensory math tutors can help your child with the following:








Multisensory Math Program That Really Works

Number Lines – A number line visual represents a value, such as a fraction, integer, or a whole number. Students can comprehend numerical sequences because the numbers are evenly spaced on a straight line. Number lines may be used to compare and arrange numbers and teach multisensory math concepts such as counting, adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing.

In addition, as one of the fundamental math operations, combines two or more items into a single group. In mathematics, addition is defined as the total or sum of two or more integers. As a result, to deal with numbers more correctly, students must also understand the characteristics of addiction.

Subtraction – Subtraction is a mathematical operation in which a number is subtracted from the total. Subtraction, like addition, has characteristics that are essential for understanding the operation. Subtraction, for example, is susceptible to the identity property and inverse operations. However, it is neither associative nor commutative.

Division – Separating a large number into smaller groups or breaking a huge number into equal pieces. It is the opposite of multiplication. Division does not obey the commutative and associative principles of real numbers.

Multiplication – In mathematics, multiplication computes the sum of two or more integers by adding them repeatedly. A multiplication statement has the following elements:

  • A multiplicand is a word with more than one meaning (the number multiplied by another number).
  • A multiplier is a kind of multiplier (the number multiplied by multiplied).
  • The product or outcome of multiplication.

Multiplication has the following properties: commutative, associative, identity, and distributive.

Fractions – Fractions are numbers that have been divided into equal pieces. It comprises a denominator and a numerator (the number of identical pieces are tallied) (the total number of equal parts in one whole). The three types of fractions are proper, improper, and mixed fractions.

Decimals – A decimal is a unit of measurement used to represent fractions. It is made up of a whole number and a fraction of a whole number (any fraction less than one), separated by a dot or decimal point. Decimals are represented on a ten-point scale (tenths, hundredths, thousandths, and so on).

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