Homeschool and Crafts

Top Math Manipulatives

Okay, so I love resources, whether that is curriculums, school supplies or manipulatives..! I’m a little lucky as my kids actually like math, but when they are using certain manipulatives they actually start to have fun! We have tried and used many different types but the ones that we use most regularly during our homeschool are…


Multiplication Cube…there are so many great ways to learn multiplication facts, whether it is recognising the patterns or testing on apps but one of the best ways to help this process for our kids has been the multiplication cube. Each face has a different number table and the kids can play with it folding it in all different directions to find answers to practice questions or to learn the tables in the traditional way by repetition. It’s great when they like to keep their hands busy…and it is easy to take in the car for short trips so they have something to “play” with!

Three Bear Counters…MiMi loves these, they make math cute…who knew! Yes, she has her hundred square but she loves to count using these and they are also different weights so you can do balance activities with them, these are by far her favorite. You can get them in different size tubs and together with the scales these make a great addition to the homeschool or homework corner.

Base Ten Unit Cubes…These are really useful now we are tackling larger numbers, it is good from a visual perspective and helps when we are looking at our place values…thousands, hundreds, ten and ones. They are small cubes and groups of cubes that you can use to build number understanding in an easy to use way for children of all ages especially when you start to move into those extra digits.

Transparent geometry mirror…Okay so not the most obvious but neither of my kids were keen on the symmetry exercises, visualising what they should be drawing for the other half of the drawing was always tricky for them. This was a relatively inexpensive item that transformed their understanding and they actually now enjoy these activities! It is great as it allows them to self check their symmetry as well.


Fraction towers…these usually come as 9 coloured towers that piece together like lego each representing a different fraction with each fraction being a piece of the tower so the eighths tower has 8 pieces, the quarters have 4 etc. They are really great for visualising fractions and comparing…not that we haven’t used other techniques…the kids see this topic as a great excuse for a pizza!

Snap Cubes…these small cubes are popular, probably because they are seen as the Lego equivalent for math…building towers swords or spaceships…but apart from that they are useful for all kinds of different math applications as they can be used individually for counting games and they clip together on all faces to form more complex shapes or for fractions.

snap cube

Clocks (12hr)…we play lots of games with these as you can incorporate them into other play time activities like roleplay.  While there are lots on the market I have found it really useful to have one where the minute hand moves with the hour hand making it easier to master the basics with younger kids…

Counting chips, geometric solids, pattern blocks and boards, money (playing with a cash register)…having a selection of these kinds of objects in a draw or box is a great resource along with many others, even toys…Lego can also be a great resource for symmetry and fractions…when they enjoy the resource and have fun, they engage in the lesson so much more and it helps them to remember!

100 square (laminated) and multiplication square (laminated) are also used on a daily basis in our homeschool. If you have read my homeschool equipment post (my laminator features in my top 5 homeschool equipment buys)the laminated part to the squares wouldn’t surprise you…yes…I love to laminate their resources!x♥x



9 replies »

  1. When we were homeschooling our preschoolers, the math manipulatives came in handy. They were mainly from the Math-U-See program. Eventually, the kids outgrew them, but not without having had the benefit of understanding the math concepts. There were really a lot of fun playing with them with the kids!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for this great post! I’ll definitely be looking into these for my younger two kids.

    I don’t know if you’re interested in digital manipulatives and simulations… physical are certainly , but there are also some great free resources available:

    The National Virtual Manipulatives Library has tons of them:

    There’re some really cool science simulations at:

    And Woot Math has some great modeling problems for rational numbers and fractions:

    Anyway, thanks again for the post!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yep, I love digital resources as well! Thank you so much for the links to these, they look really fantastic. I love to mix up the resources that we use so these will be a great addition for the kids x


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