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Math Methodology:
Instruction Resources


Math Methodology: Instruction Zone

Math Methodology is a three part series on instruction, assessment, and curriculum. Sections contains relevant essays and resources.

This page continues part 1 on Instruction, providing Instruction Resources, including for special needs students (e.g., deaf, visually impaired, learning disabilities, English language learners).

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Math Methodology Instruction Resources

Instruction Specific to the Common Core


Help your students understand what the Common Core Standards of Mathematical Practices mean to them.

Jordan School District in Utah has made available colorful Common Core math posters that visually describe each mathematical practice with pictures, words, and examples.  Within each of the eight standards are posters applicable to grade bands K-1, 2-3, 4-5, and 6.  Display these in your classroom. provides valuable Common Core resources:

Common Core Math Book Bundle: Strategies for Common Core Mathematics: Implementing the Standards for Mathematical Practice, 9-12 Common Core Math Book Bundle: Strategies for Common Core Mathematics: Implementing the Standards for Mathematical Practice, 6-8 Common Core Math Book Bundle: Strategies for Common Core Mathematics: Implementing the Standards for Mathematical Practice, K-5Leslie Texas and Tammy Jones (2013) have a series of three books, each explaining the eight mathematical practices for the grade band and providing specific instructional strategies that align with the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics:

ASCD EduCore logo EduCore from ASCD is a free resource for  "professional development, lesson plans and modules, and other materials—that you will need to successfully implement the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and Literacy."  The Math Tools section "features formative assessment lessons and instructional videos for mathematics aligned to the Common Core."  Classroom challenges (formative assessment lessons developed by the Mathematics Assessment Project) are provided for middle and high school, concept development, problem solving, and include supplemental and related resources.  ASCD's Common Core Resource Collections on iTunes include math for each K-8 grade, Algebra 1, Algebra 2, and Geometry.  Each collection is intended to give you lesson and activity ideas; suggested books, apps, and web content; instructional content and assessment information; and sample assessment items from PARCC and SBAC to help meet the goals of the CCSS.  Most math resources within each collection are free.

Inside Mathematics, which grew out of the Noyce Foundation's Silicon Valley Mathematics Initiative, is exemplary as "a professional resource for educators passionate about improving students' mathematics learning and performance. This site features classroom examples of innovative teaching methods and insights into student learning, tools for mathematics instruction [organized by grade level and subject] that teachers can use immediately, and video tours of the ideas and materials on the site" (Welcome section).  The Ohio Department of Education developed a Correlation of Inside Mathematics Tasks to CCSS (Common Core State Standards) as of June 2010.

PowerUp WHAT WORKS provides "customizable resources for teachers, school leaders, PD facilitators, and teacher educators to improve teaching and learning for struggling students and those with disabilities."  You'll find "teaching strategies supported by technology, technology use in schools and classrooms, Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and differentiated instruction, [and] guidance on meeting Common Core Standards" (About Us section).  The Resource Library contains numerous articles on math teaching strategies.

Teachers' Domain states that it "is a free digital media service for educational use from public broadcasting and its partners. You’ll find thousands of media resources, support materials, and tools for classroom lessons, individualized learning programs, and teacher professional learning communities."  You can search by content area, including mathematics, or by state standards, national standards from leading organizations such as NCTM, and Common Core State Standards.  There is a section on teaching strategies.

Teaching Channel offers free videos "on the Internet and TV—of inspiring and effective teaching practices in America's schools."  Further, the "video library offers educators a wide range of subjects for grades K-12. The videos also include information on alignment with Common Core State Standards and ancillary material for teachers to use in their own classrooms" (About Us section).

Teaching the Core Video Library is a "collection of classroom videos and associated lesson materials to help K-12 educators implement the instructional shifts required by the Common Core State Standards. Each videotaped lesson includes descriptive annotations that identify lesson elements, and teacher and student actions and behaviors, that support Common Core learning" (Home page description).

Understanding Language: Supporting ELL in Mathematics is an initiative at Stanford University to develop materials that illustrate how Common Core aligned math tasks can be used to support math instruction and language development for English language learners in elementary, middle, and high school. You'll find adapted tasks from the publicly accessible curriculum projects Inside Mathematics and the Mathematics Assessment Project, principles for teaching mathematics to ELLs, and "Language of Math" Task Templates that can be used by teachers to design and write their own language-focused activities, and more.  Judit Moschkovich (2012) provided the following recommendations for connecting mathematical content to language:

  1. Focus on students’ mathematical reasoning, not accuracy in using language.
  2. Shift to a focus on mathematical discourse practices, move away from simplified views of language.
  3. Recognize and support students to engage with the complexity of language in math classrooms.
  4. Treat everyday language and experiences as resources, not as obstacles.
  5. Uncover the mathematics in what students say and do.  (pp. 21-23)

Reference: Moschkovich, J. (2012). Mathematics, the Common Core, and language: Recommendations for mathematics instruction for ELLs aligned with the Common Core. Retrieved from



Man reading document on fireHOT:  The Alabama Department of Education has provided a series of video clips related to the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics, which "provide additional insight into how the College and Career Ready Standards change instruction and the implications of the Standards for the classroom."

Hung-Hsi Wu (University of California at Berkeley) has a series of articles on the Common Core Math Standards.  The following are among those:


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For All Learners

HOT:  Practice Guides from the What Works Clearinghouse (WWC), and its special section for What Works in Math, are intended to help educators make evidence-based decisions.  The WWC is managed by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) on behalf of the U.S. Department of Education.  Practice guides "consist of actionable recommendations, strategies for overcoming potential roadblocks, and an indication of the strength of evidence supporting each recommendation. IES practice guides are subjected to rigorous external peer review," according to the WWC.  The following examples are among those:

Developing Effective Fractions Instruction for Kindergarten Through 8th Grade (2010, September).  "This practice guide presents five recommendations intended to help educators improve students’ understanding of fractions. Recommendations include strategies to develop young children’s understanding of early fraction concepts and ideas for helping older children understand the meaning of fractions and the computations involved. The guide also highlights ways to build on students’ existing strategies to solve problems involving ratios, rates, and proportions" (Summary section).  Recommendations include:

  1. Build on students’ informal understanding of sharing and proportionality to develop initial fraction concepts.
  2. Help students recognize that fractions are numbers and that they expand the number system beyond whole numbers. Use number lines as a central representational tool in teaching this and other fraction concepts from the early grades onward.
  3. Help students understand why procedures for computations with fractions make sense.
  4. Develop students’ conceptual understanding of strategies for solving ratio, rate, and proportion problems before exposing them to cross-multiplication as a procedure to use to solve such problems.
  5. Professional development programs should place a high priority on improving teachers’ understanding of fractions and of how to teach them.

Improving Mathematical Problem Solving in Grades 4 Through 8 (2012, May). "This practice guide provides five recommendations for improving students’ mathematical problem solving in grades 4 through 8. This guide is geared toward teachers, math coaches, other educators, and curriculum developers who want to improve the mathematical problem solving of students" (Summary section).  A video accompanies each recommendation.  Recommendations include:

  1. Prepare problems and use them in whole-class instruction.
  2. Assist students in monitoring and reflecting on the problem-solving process.
  3. Teach students how to use visual representations.
  4. Expose students to multiple problem-solving strategies.
  5. Help students recognize and articulate mathematical concepts and notation.

Teaching Calculus by Lin McMullin is a blog for high school teachers and students, especially Advanced Placement Calculus teachers and students.  You'll find comments, suggestions, hints, and observations on the topics for the course, and a video collection.  Of particular value is the section called "Thru the Year," which includes topics in an order that they typically taught month-by-month.

Teaching Math to Young Children: A Practice Guide (2013, November).  This guide elaborates on five evidence-based recommendations principally for educators who teach mathematics to children ages 3 to 6:

  1. Teach number and operations using a developmental progression.
  2. Teach geometry, patterns, measurement, and data analysis using a developmental progression.
  3. Use progress monitoring to ensure that math instruction builds on what each child knows.
  4. Teach children to view and describe their world mathematically.
  5. Dedicate time each day to teaching math, and integrate math instruction throughout the school day.

Teaching Strategies for Improving Algebra Knowledge in Middle and High School Students (2015, April).  "This practice guide presents evidenced-based suggestions for how to improve algebra skills and knowledge for students in grades 6–12. The guide offers three recommendations that provide teachers with specific, actionable guidance for implementing these practices in their classrooms. It also provides a level of supporting evidence for each recommendation, examples to use in class, and solutions to potential implementation challenges" (p. 1).  Recommendations include:

  1. Use solved problems to engage students in analyzing algebraic reasoning and strategies.
  2. Teach students to utilize the structure of algebraic representations.
  3. Teach students to intentionally choose from alternative algebraic strategies when solving problems. (p. 2)


Professor says that one of the beauties in math is 111,111,111 X 111,111,111 = 12, 345,678,987,654,321

Hook your students on The Beauty in Numbers in Math Wonders to Inspire Teachers and Students by Alfred S. Posamentier (2003), an ASCD publication.  Chapter 1, available online, is an amazing discussion of some surprising number patterns, power relationships, beautiful number relationships, strange equalities, perfect numbers, friendly numbers (Yes, there is a definition of friendly numbers), palindromic numbers (e.g., 12321), number associations with geometric figures, Fibonacci numbers (i.e., 1, 1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21, 34, 55, 89,...) and more.  As examples:

  1. Note the digits of these special numbers and the consecutive exponents (p. 12)

  • 598 = 51+92+83

  • 1,676 = 11+62+73+64

  1. A palindrome, which is a number that can be read the same in both directions, can be generated from any number by making successive additions of the number with its reversal (p. 27).  This might take a few such additions.

  • 67 + 76 = 143; 143 + 341 = 484, a palindrome

  1. There are only five numbers (i.e., 1, 153, 370, 371, and 407) in which the number is the sum of the cubes of its digits as in 153 = 13+53+33 (p. 36).


Adding It Up: Helping Children Learn Mathematics (2001) is a longer book (over 400 pages), available online, by the Mathematics Learning Study Committee and editors Jeremy Kilpatrick, Jane Swafford, and Bradford Findell of the Center for Education at the National Research Council.  Its focus is school mathematics from pre-kindergarten to eighth grade. Much of this report attends to the learning and teaching of number, but authors emphasize that their perspective is considerably broader than just computation.  Authors say, "Three kinds of knowledge are crucial for teaching school mathematics: knowledge of mathematics, knowledge of students, and knowledge of instructional practices" (p. 370).

Adolescent Literacy in the Content Areas posted at Brown University contains a section devoted to Supporting the Math Classroom through Literacy Development, originally posted at the Knowledge Loom web site.  Note: the Knowledge Loom was archived in 2013.  Strategies that support literacy development and understanding of math concepts include "Think Alouds, graphic organizers, word problems, brainteasers, math journals, Inquiry Models, Quick Writes, Word Walls, concept maps, flow charts, computer or graphic programming, creation of texts, Socratic Questioning, and WebQuests" (p. 174).

Algebra 4 All (A4A) Social Network is a "community of educators committed to sharing resources and supporting one another in the practice of teaching Algebra."  A4A is sponsored by the Michigan Learnport.  You'll find a group discussion forum, a project and lesson sharing area, blog posts, videos on multiple topics, an extensive collection of resources organized by function families, and more.

The Art of Teaching Resources from

Centre for Innovation in Mathematics Teaching (CIMT) was established in 1986 at the University of Exeter in the UK and is now housed at the University of Plymouth.  Content is focused on research and curriculum development for mathematics teaching and learning.  K-12 educators will be particularly interested in the CIMT curriculum resources, such as "pupil texts, lesson plans, classroom resources, assessment materials and on-line interactive resources."  There is also a section for math misconceptions.  Don't miss the project, The Mathematics Enhancement Programme, which offers school curriculum and teaching material (posted online) for mathematics for all grade levels with lesson plans, copymasters, and tests.  Read articles from the International Journal for Mathematics Teaching and Learning.

Classroom Instruction That Works by Marzano, Pickering, and PollockClassroom Instruction That Works (2001) by Robert Marzano, Debra Pickering, and Jane Pollock includes nine research-based instructional strategies that have a high probability of enhancing student achievement for all students in all subject areas at all grade levels:

The authors caution, however, that instructional strategies are only tools and "they should not be expected to work equally well in all situations."

Concrete and Virtual Manipulatives Research: The George Mason University Mathematics Education Center focuses on the study of concrete and virtual manipulatives.  You will find a list of published articles and abstracts on this topic.

The Critical Thinking Community comprises The Center for Critical Thinking and Moral Critique and the Foundation For Critical Thinking.  "The work of the Foundation is to integrate the Center’s research and theoretical developments, and to create events and resources designed to help educators improve their instruction" (Mission).  Resources are numerous at this site, particularly articles that define critical thinking and elaborate on the dimensions of critical thought.  See Sample Teaching Strategies for K-12 Teachers and For Students, for example.  Articles are relevant for teaching critical thinking within the mathematics classroom.

Everyday Mathematics algorithms for grades 2-6 and their animations from the publisher are among free resources and are also good for family use.

Helping Children Learn Mathematics (2002) is a short book (52 pages), available online, by the Mathematics Learning Study Committee and editors J. Kilpatrick and J. Swafford of the Center for Education at the National Research Council.  The authors stress that mathematics proficiency involves five intertwined strands: understanding mathematics, computing fluency, applying concepts to solve problems, reasoning logically, and engaging with mathematics, seeing it as sensible, useful, and doable.  Mathematics in grades K-8 should be taught for an hour a day.  Time should be divided so that all of the strands receive adequate attention--the key being that instructional materials should integrate the five strands. All students can and should be proficient in mathematics.

Houghton Mifflin Math Education Place has teaching models and tools (glossary, online manipulatives, graphic organizers, games) associated with each of the chapters in their K-6 texts to help you teach concepts--excellent resource for methodology.

Images: A Resource Guide for Improving Measurement and Geometry in Elementary Schools was a K-5 professional development initiative of the Pennsylvania State Team of the Mid-Atlantic Eisenhower Consortium for Mathematics and Science Education at Research for Better Schools.  You'll find information and resources to help teachers develop a deeper understanding of geometry and measurement concepts and to assist in designing meaningful instruction for elementary students.  Instructional activities and lesson plans are included that address five strands: visual and spatial reasoning, two and three dimensional geometry, coordinate geometry, transformational geometry, and measurement.  However, math teachers throughout K-12 will benefit from the content.  Of particular interest are the Van Hiele Levels of Geometric Reasoning.  Teaching strategies and assessment issues are addressed with how-to's, lesson plans and activities:



Instructional Methods Information by Dr. Bob Kizlik includes advantages, disadvantages, and required preparation related to using direct teaching, cooperative learning, lecture, lecture with discussion, a panel of experts, brainstorming, video tapes/slides, discussion, small group discussion, role playing, worksheets/surveys, guest speakers, and values clarification.

Instructional Strategies Online from Saskatoon Public Schools (CA) includes five categories of instructional strategies and explanation of these five categories: direct instruction, indirect instruction, experiential learning, independent study, and interactive instruction.  There are additional sections for instructional skills, and instructional methods by strategy.

Instructional Tools Related to Mathematics from Special Connections at the University of Kansas.  Tools relate to building initial mathematical understanding and then extending it, building math proficiency (e.g., via instructional games), evaluating student needs and making effective math decisions.

Iowa Education Agency 267: Curriculum, Instruction, Assessment contains specific sections on content, instruction, assessment and alignment of all three. provides information for parents who home school, early childhood or primary educators, education students, beginning teachers, seasoned teachers changing grade, and parents wondering what their children should be learning in school.  General tips for teaching and how to teach math, science, social studies, with themes, art, and ideas for holidays are provided.

Knowing and Teaching Elementary MathematicsKnowing and Teaching Elementary Mathematics (2010) by Liping Ma is the anniversary edition of his book, which was first published in 1999.  It includes examples from teachers explaining what it means to know and be able to teach elementary school mathematics.  Richard Askey explained the relevance of this book in an article by the same name in the Fall 1999 edition of American Educator.  You'll be introduced to typical scenarios in the classroom, such as teaching subtraction and regrouping, multi-digit multiplication, division by fractions, and the relationship between area and perimeter.

LINKS Learning Logo GifLINKS Learning is an "E-learning site, [which] has involved Washington's Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction and partner organizations including the Technology Based Learning and Research Project at Arizona State University; the Washington school districts involved in the Washington Alliance for Better Schools; Carkhuff Thinking Systems; Limelight Technologies, Inc.; Fairfax County, Virginia schools; and Educational Service District 113 in Olympia, Washington." The Teacher Section for Math is designed to provide information and resources to assist teachers and others in understanding and providing high quality instruction for all students.  You will find:

The math concept maps in Curriculum Planning are superb with examples of the key concepts for each of the five math content areas. When you click on the bolded concepts, you will see a definition and, in some cases, examples.

Math Forum GifMathematics Education: The Math Forum at NCTM contains information on topics as assessment, block scheduling, calculus reform, collaborative learning, curriculum development, grouping and tracking, interdisciplinary math, math education reform, mathematicians, NCTM standards, and the WWW and pedagogy.  See math resources for people with disabilities.   Read about teaching issues/strategies and technology in math education.

National Center for Improving Student Learning & Achievement in Mathematics & Science has researched and produced documents of relevance for improving math achievement. Among those are: Algebraic Reasoning in the Elementary Grades (Grades K-5), Classroom Assessment as the Basis for Teacher Change (Grades 5-8--addresses role of formative assessment) Statistics in the Middle Grades (Grades 6-8)

The Most Common Errors in Undergraduate Mathematics have been articulated by E. Schechter of Vanderbilt University's Math Department, along with the likely causes of those errors, and their remedies.  Dr. Schechter presents errors in communication, algebra errors, confusion with notation, errors in reasoning, unwarranted generalizations, and common calculus errors.  Any teacher of upper level secondary mathematics will also benefit from this presentation, which should be shared with students--they make the mistakes after all.  Pointing out these common errors as part of your teaching methodology might help students to become more successful in learning algebra and calculus. has a section on instructional strategies addressing active participation, cooperative learning, assessment, classroom management, and differentiation.

Northwest Regional Educational Laboratory Math Problem Solving Model "helps educators meet the challenges of teaching and assessing open-ended problem solving. The model includes a scoring guide for problem solving, open-ended tasks, and examples of student work for practice in scoring."  The design of the model was informed by Robert McIntosh and Denise Jarrett's (2000) TEACHING MATHEMATICAL PROBLEM SOLVING: IMPLEMENTING THE VISION, which is a review of recent research and literature on the essential traits and processes of teaching and learning mathematics through open-ended problem solving.

National Numeracy Network: Teaching Resources from the Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College include multiple resources for teaching quantitative reasoning at the secondary and post-secondary levels.  For example, seven pedagogical methods are provided(e.g., teaching quantitative reasoning with the news, teaching with data, teaching with models, teaching with spreadsheets across the curriculum).

Pedagogy in Action from the Science Education Resource Center at Carleton College includes a library of pedagogic methods and related activities exemplifying each method. You can begin by exploring sections on Engaged Pedagogies, Teaching with Data, Quantitative Reasoning, and Assessment.

Promoting Reading Strategies for Developmental Mathematics Textbooks by Anne E. Campbell, Ann Schlumberger, and Lou Ann Pate of Pima Community College presents three reading and study strategies designed to facilitate student comprehension of and learning from developmental mathematics textbooks.  The discussion includes a preview, predict, read, and review reading strategy; concept cards; and a Question Answer Relationship technique.  For example, concepts cards can include definitions, characteristics, examples, and nonexamples. Common kinds of concept cards in math include: (a) strategy cards for solving problems; (b) fact cards that include rules, laws, or theorems; and (c) cards for symbols and specialized vocabulary. has a series of articles on how to teach math.  Among resources are lesson plans, podcasts, and curriculum units for elementary, middle, and high school math.

Teaching Math to Young Children by Rick Garlikov is "one of a series of Web pages to help students understand math, and to help parents teach their children math -- especially to help children have a good foundation."  Some other essays in this series include:

The Problem with Math is EnglishThe Problem with Math Is English by Concepcion Molina (2012) is "A Language-Focused Approach to Helping All Students Develop a Deeper Understanding of Mathematics."  All math teachers, particularly those who teach grades 3-9, will benefit as Molina delves into the language and symbolism of mathematics and the importance of integrating English language comprehension lessons into math instruction.  He provides tips for doing so.  All students, including English language learners, benefit from explicit language instruction integrated into the math curriculum.  The focus is on building conceptual understanding of key concepts "primarily in the algebra and number and operation strands of the mathematics content standards.  At the same time, the text explores the relationships between and connections among key mathematical topics to illustrate how a basic understanding of more complex concepts can be developed while teaching fundamental ideas" (p. xvii) .

An Introduction to Teaching Mathematics at the College Level (pdf) by Suzanne Kelton (Assumption College) is intended primarily for those new to teaching math at the college level.  The subject-matter content relates to teaching algebra, precalculus and calculus with excellent tips for introducing concepts.  As those subjects are also in the high-school curriculum, this guide should prove helpful for high school teachers.

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For Special Needs Learners


Do you need some quick facts about learning disabilities?

Question markProminent learning disabilities among school-age children include dyscalculia, dysgraphia, dyspraxia, dyslexia, ADHD, and Gerstmann's Syndrome.  You can learn more about these and their symptoms, possible causes, and common issues from the Learning Disabilities Infographic posted at

Assistive Technology: an Overview is a five-part module from Vanderbilt University, which provides classroom teachers with information and videos on working with students with disabilities.  In addition to providing the basics, it "explores ways to expand students' access to [assistive technology] in the classroom."

Do you know your rights?

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) (20 U.S.C. § 1232g; 34 CFR Part 99) is "a Federal law that protects the privacy of student education records. The law applies to all schools that receive funds under an applicable program of the U.S. Department of Education.  FERPA gives parents certain rights with respect to their children's education records.  These rights transfer to the student when he or she reaches the age of 18 or attends a school beyond the high school level" (FERPA web site description).

Section 504 and the Education of Children with Disabilities Frequently Asked Questions outlines some key facts you should know about.


K-8 Access Center BannerAccess Center contains a number of information briefs on strategies for teaching K-8 math to all learners, and specifically for those with mild learning disabilities.  For example, read about using mnemonic instruction, peer tutoring, computer-assisted instruction, the Concrete-Representational-Abstract Instructional Approach, direct/explicit instruction, learner accommodations and instructional modifications for students with learning disabilities, math differentiation, problem-solving strategies, graphic organizers, and more.  Presentations such as Research Based Math Interventions are included.  The Access Center is a national technical assistance (TA) center funded by the Office of Special Education Programs.

Center on Instruction: Mathematics offers materials and resources "to build educators’ knowledge of instruction for students with low achievement in mathematics, improve professional development models for math teachers, and build teachers’ skills in monitoring student growth toward important math outcomes."  The Center on Instruction maintains a collection of scientifically based research for reading, math, science, special education and English language learners,  and exemplars of best practice.  It is one of five content centers serving as resources for the 16 regional U.S. Department of Education Comprehensive Centers.

Developmental Disabilities Research Reviews: Special Issue: Pathways to Mathematical Learning Difficulties and Disabilities, 2009, Vol 15, Issue 1 includes several articles on math learning difficulties for various populations.  Of particular interest is free access to the following: addresses teaching and learning strategies for learners with dyscalculia (math LDs) and dyslexia (reading LDs).  A diagnostic is available (fee attached), along with special education resources.

Dyscalculator iconLearners with dyscalculia might benefit from a special talking calculator called the Dyscalculator.  It is designed to assist with arithmetic by offering four different representations of quantities: as digits, as words, graphically, and spoken aloud.  It can also round numbers.  This free app is designed for iPad, iPhone.  Also see Dyscalculator for Android.

Bullseye GifEducation for All: The Report of the Expert Panel on Literacy and Numeracy Instruction for Students With Special Education Needs, Kindergarten to Grade 6 (2005) was financially supported by the Ontario Ministry of Education in Canada (See  The report recommends practices, based on research, "to improve and reinforce effective instruction of reading, writing, oral communication, and mathematics to students from Kindergarten to Grade 6 who have special education needs" (p. 1).  However, practices discussed can enhance the learning of all students in mathematics and literacy.  Chapters address Universal Design and Differentiated Instruction, Assessment and Evaluation, Developing Learning Profiles, Professional Learning Communities, Research to Practice: What Works for Both Literacy and Numeracy; Effective Instructional Approaches for Numeracy, Effective Instructional Approaches for Literacy, Organization and Management, Computer-based Assistive Technology, and Professional Development.

Education Development Center: Addressing Accessibility in Mathematics contains three documents of value:

LD Online Logo GifLearning Disabilities Online contains a series of articles with strategies for teaching mathematics to students with learning disabilities, but those strategies are suitable for use with all students.   Read how to modify mathematics instruction to promote success and understanding in the areas of mathematical readiness, computation, and problem-solving; how use cooperative learning in the math classroom, and how to break math difficulties down into different types.  Another article discusses techniques that have been demonstrated to be effective with secondary students who have learning disabilities in mathematics.

James Madison University Learning Toolbox LogoLearning Toolbox from the James Madison University Special Education Program contains tools and resources to enable students with learning difficulties to become better learners.  Sections are devoted to secondary learners, teachers of middle and secondary students, and parents.  Academic areas and strategies include organization, test taking, study skills, notetaking, reading, writing, math, and advanced thinking.  Advanced thinking addresses organizing information sequentially, comparing and contrasting ideas, understanding categories, determining cause and effect relationships, and problem solving.

Math Forum GifMathematics Education: The Math Forum at NCTM also contains math resources for people with disabilities. is speech recognition software for mathematics from Metroplex Voice Computing. It enables math to be done without keyboard or mouse.  Use it for voice arithmetic /pre-algebra /algebra /trig /calculus /statistics/graphing & more.  It includes Scientific Notebook; users can choose to translate math to Braille in Duxbury Braille Translator.  Demos are available.

Math VIDS LogoMath VIDS! "MathVIDS is an interactive website for teachers who are teaching math to students who are having difficulty learning mathematics. The development of MathVIDS was sponsored through funding by the Virginia Department of Education" (sec: Introduction). The site contains Foundational Information, Instructional Strategies, and Teaching Plans. Foundational Information is devoted to Math Disabilities and Metacognitive Strategies. The Instructional Strategies section describes and models fifteen, research-based effective math instructional strategies for students with learning difficulties. The Teaching Plans section provides detailed instructional plans and selected video models for teaching specific K-5 math concepts/SOL.

National Center on Accessible Instructional Materials:  Learn about accessible media, policy, and practice.

Signing Math Dictionary iconSigning Math Dictionary (SMD) is a math app by Vcom3D, compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.  It is described as "an illustrated, interactive 3D sign language dictionary with 705 math terms defined in both American Sign Language (ASL) and Signed English (SE).  The SMD is one in a series of fully animated, illustrated and interactive 3D signing dictionaries. The SMD is designed for grade 4-8 students who are Deaf or Hard-of-Hearing and use ASL or SE in the classroom.  The SMD supports access to standards-based math content among elementary and middle school students" (Description section). While not free (about $15), it would also be a valuable tool for teachers and parents.

Special Connections, according to the Web site, "is a Project of National Significance (CFDA #84.325N) funded through the federal Office of Special Education Programs (OSEP) and coordinated through the University of Kansas. The ultimate goal of the project is to provide educators, both classroom teachers and university faculty, with tools and resources that support students with special needs in general education settings and in accessing the general education curriculum in meaningful ways. Four main areas of focus include Instruction, Assessment, Behavior Plans, and Collaboration." Tools for mathematics address building initial mathematical understanding, extending that understanding, building proficiency through games, evaluating student needs and making effective mathematics instructional decisions.

Supporting ELLS in Mathematics from Stanford University includes highly recommended teaching resources related to the Common Core, including principles for instruction, guidelines for math instructional materials development, and "language of math" task templates (e.g., to support reading math problems, and to support math vocabulary for communication).

Teaching Math to Visually Impaired Students: S. Osterhaus of the Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired offers strategies and resources for teaching mathematics to visually impaired students.  She provides links to math education and Nemeth code, tactile math graphics, calculators, current research in math for VI students and more.

TIPS for English Language Learners in Mathematics (2005) from the Ontario (CA) Ministry of Education includes grade-level support materials for those working with English language learners in Grades 7 to 10. "This resource contains models for adjustment of instruction for pairs, small groups, or the entire class and ways of differentiating instruction and assessment for English language learners so they can achieve literacy and mathematics goals. These adjustments in student groupings, teaching strategies, timing, and materials are based on recent research of ways to support English language learners" (Introduction, p. 1).


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For the Instructional Environment and Addressing Behaviors

Committee for Children addresses programs for prevention of bullying and violence, and includes a personal safety curriculum.

You Can Handle Them All, a Web site on discipline help for teachers and parents, lists over 100 behaviors (e.g., arrogant, class clown, cheater, disorganized, overly aggressive, whiner), the affect of each, actions to take to change the behavior, and mistakes in dealing with the behavior.


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Connect Math to Everyday Life

As you strive to learn methods for presenting math concepts to students, don't neglect your need to connect math to your learners' everyday lives.  Consider Scholastic MATH, an award-winning math magazine with 10 issues each year designed specifically for middle school and early high school students.  Each issue also includes articles on real-world uses of math and how math is used in various careers.

Plus is an internet magazine which is free for educational and non-commercial purposes.  It would appeal to learners aged about 15 and above.  It aims to introduce readers to the beauty and the practical applications of mathematics.  You'll find "articles, which describe applications of maths to real-world problems, games, and puzzles; reviews of popular maths books and events; a news section, showing how recent news stories were often based on some underlying piece of maths that never made it to the newspapers; a puzzle for you to sharpen your wits against; a lucky dip of mathematical curiosities; and opinions on various maths-related topics and news stories. [Plus also has] a regular interview with someone in a maths-related career, showing the wide range of uses maths gets put to in the real world." (About Plus section)



Do you have a question about teaching mathematics?

Question markThe Mathematics Educators Stack Exchange "is a question and answer site for those involved in the field of teaching mathematics. It's built and run by you as part of the Stack Exchange network of Q&A sites." With your help, the site "is working together to build a library of detailed answers to every question about teaching mathematics."  The site is totally free and no registration is required.  Anyone can ask a question, anyone can answer, and the best answers are voted up and rise to the top.

Need books or articles on Math Methodology?

Man sitting on stack of books

Association for Childhood Education International  Among publications of interest is the book: Mathematics for All:  Instructional Strategies To Assist Students With Learning Challenges, Editors:  Nancy L. Gallenstein and Dodi Hodges, 2011.

ERIC (Education Resources Information Center) is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences.  ERIC's search can be restricted to peer-reviewed only or full text articles.  Search by descriptors such as mathematics instruction, mathematics achievement, mathematics education, academic achievement, teaching methods, program effectiveness, and more.  You can search by source, author, publication date, publication type, education level, and audience. There is a Thesaurus that has multiple subcategories and related mathematical terms.  ERIC offers an extensive collection for journal articles, books, research syntheses, conference papers, technical reports, policy papers, and other education-related materials.  Note: Your might be interested in a history of ERIC: 50 Years of ERIC: 1964-2014. has mathematics books at all levels.  Use search phrases such as mathematics study teaching secondary or mathematics study teaching elementary.  This site will then link you to a resource for purchasing the book.

National Academies Press: has over 4,000 books online, which you can read for free.  For example, math educators might be interested in How Students Learn: History, Mathematics, and Science in the Classroom (2005) by Committee on How People Learn, A Targeted Report for Teachers, Center for Studies on Behavior and Development, National Research Council.

National Council of Teachers of Mathematics: Educators might be particularly interested in the following books.

Implementing the Common Core State Standards Through Problem Solving, K-2 Implementing the Common Core State Standards Through Problem Solving, Grades 3-5 Implementing the Common Core State Standards through Mathematical Problem Solving, Grades 6-8 Implementing the Common Core State Standards through Mathematical Problem Solving, High School Principles to Actions

  • Implementing the Common Core State Standards through Mathematical Problem Solving is a series of books available by grade bands: K-2, 3-5, 6-8, and high school.
  • Principles to Actions: Ensuring Mathematical Success for All addresses "What it will take to turn the opportunity of the Common Core into reality in every classroom, school, and district."  You'll find "a research-based description of eight essential Mathematics Teaching Practices" and more. promotes itself as the world's largest online library.  Search using phrases like: teaching mathematics. 


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Binoculars GifSee other Math Methodology pages:

Instruction--EssayAssessment and Curriculum: Content and Mapping