Math manipulatives

In class we use many different tools to support our number sense and supports us during adding and subtracting.

I’ve created a list of items you can use at home (or in your classroom) to support your child’s learning. Some items are  printable while others you can order on

Power of ten cards (ten frames)

  • Great for making 10!  (2 parts make a whole:10) as flash cards or playing Go fish!
  • Using for board games instead of rolling dice
  • Quick number recognition (full top line is 5, one more is 6 etc)

In class I use the Learning Resources Giant Magnetic Ten-Frame Set which is great for demonstrations and showing their knowledge as a manipulative. Helps that they are nice colours too..  I’m a little partial (usually our counters are red and yellow..) But these are more for whole group learning at they are:

1. magnetic

2. giant

A less expensive version being in card stock:  Ten Frames and Counters Manipulative from


  • Great for working with doubles
  • Addition and subtraction prompts
  • Quick dot pattern recognition (Kindergarten and Grade 1!)

Here are some different domino options that I like:

Double 6s  Trademark Games Premium Set of 28 Double Six Dominoes with Wood Case Brown

Double 9s Trademark Games 12-2409 Premium Set of 55 Double Nine Dominoes with Wood Case Brown

Double 12s Double 12 Color Dot Dominoes in Tin

Double 15s Cardinal CRD 9515C Double Fifteen Color Dot Dominoes in a Collectors Tin – Styles May Vary’

Number lines

  • Great for addition: counting on
  • Great for subtraction: counting the difference

I class I have used Carson-Dellosa Student Number Lines 
or if your child has a homework desk at home then I love the Carson-Dellosa 0-20 Number Line Traditional Desk Tapes as it is always there when you need it! In the classroom setting I would stick a layer of mactack over top for extra durability.

Playing cards

  • Go fish: making ten friends, doubles
  • Flip and add ____  (or subtract) an addition/subtraction prompt (flip a card and add said amount)
    • ex: we will add +1 this round, so flip an 8….8+1=9
  •  Je veux 10 (I want 10)

Bicycle Rider Back Poker Playing Cards – 2 Decks




  • 2 for addition/subtraction
  • dot pattern recognition
  • 1 for playing games like: Double me!  Double me and some! (doubles +1 ),  Je veux 10! (x+__=10), roll and subtract, etc.

TR.OD Dragons Dungeons Dice Opaque Multi Sides Dice D4-D20 Black offers a variety of dice… if you get two sets you WILL BE set! (4,6,8,10,10,12,20-sided)

Click here ! For great resources (printables) from the Government of Manitoba (k-6)

Having math tools at home can ease homework time as they allow for hands on learning. We use a variety of different counters and so there is no need to buy anything special. Students can use buttons, plastic dinosaurs, beans, jelly beans, mini marshmallows (edible is fun in subtraction!), rocks.. the list goes on! No need for more than sets of 20 in early primary addition and subtraction.  Have fun! You might learn a new way of doing things too!

Five Manipulatives//Support your child at home//