Tool Box for Homeschooling Young and Special Needs Children

Homeschool Teaching Ideas

Manipulatives are great tools for showing students, in a concrete way, the concepts you are teaching them. When I set out to homeschool my special needs daughter, the first thing I purchased was two sets of inexpensive counting bears. I found these at a Wal-Mart. These should not be too hard to find, but I’m sure a teacher supply store would have them. They come with five different colored bears and five different colored buckets which can be used in a huge number of different ways.

As my daughter did her math problems, I would have my daughter pull out 5 green bears and 3 red bears since the math problem was 5 + 3= 8. She would then count all the bears, so that she would understand the concept. This hands-on approach moved her along much faster, than if I had tried to get her to understand the concept from written material. Dyslexic kids will tend to be so distracted by what is on the paper they miss the concept in the real world arena.

We used these for every concept that needed to be learned. In multiplication, we lined up 5 bears in three different lines or three different buckets for 3 x 5, etc. Any manipulatives will do the trick, but if your child likes animals the bears make it more fun.

Until next time,



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