Math, Technology, & Differentiation

thinkerWhen you think of an airplane, you may get a particular image in your mind. However there are many different kinds of airplanes. Since the introduction of Math Blasters over 20 years ago, many teachers still associate the computer with drill and practice. However there are many ways to use technology in mathematics instruction. The key is flexible thinking. Each child learns differently. Some will be successful with manipulatives, while others find computer tools, photographs, or real-world data engaging.

Let's explore three ways to think about math and technology:

Math Practice

With endless patience and unlimited examples, the computer is a great tool to help students practice math concepts. The key is matching the needs of the learner with meaningful resources.


practice helicopterBarney Color, Shapes, & Numbers from PBS Kids
Caillou Match the Leaves and Puzzle from PBS Kids
Connect to the World from PBS Kids sound
Counting Cheese with Murry from Pauly's Games sound
CyberPatterns sound
Dragon Tales Connect Dots and Shapes from PBS Kids
Early Math Games from PBS Kids
Learning Games from BBC CBeebies - Kindergarten
Learning Shapes with Krog from Pauly's Games sound
Lost Babies Movie sound
Matching Shapes with Krog from Pauly's Games sound
Mend the Number Square sound
Sesame Street from PBS Kids
Sesame Street Workshop
Snakes and Ladders
Sound Memory Game from Pauly's Games sound


Addition Machine from Ambleweb
Arthur Games from PBS Kids
- Aliens Assembly Required
- Virtual Goose
Bang on Time
Count Hoot's Number Games
from BBC - Addition, Subtraction
Early Math Games from PBS Kids
Flash Cards for Beginners (Add & Subtract 1-10) from Pauly's Games
Play a Game from Number Time BBC sound
Professor Finkle's Adding Machine from Pauly's Games
Speed Grid Challenge - Addition
Speed Grid Challenge - Subtraction
Starship Math from BBC
Stop the Clock 1 - T1/2 hour intervals
Stop the Clock 2 - 15 minute intervals
Stop the Clock 3 - 5 minute intervals
Stop the Clock 4 - minute
Stop the Clock 5 - minute
Stop the Clock - matching times
Sum Sense- Addition - Figuring out addition problems
Sum Sense- Subtraction - Figuring out subtraction problems
Subtraction Machine from Ambleweb
Utah Education Network


Addition Machine from Ambleweb
Banana Hunt - angles
Billy Bug - learn coordinates
Billy Bug 2 - learn coordinates
Cyberchase from PBSKids - Problem solving sound (Grades 3-5)
Early Math Games from PBS Kids
Fraction Flags: Halves and Quarters
Fraction Flags: Thirds
Ghost Blasters
Ghost Blasters 100
Ghost Blasters II
Ghost Blaster Operation Even
Ghost Blaster Operation Odd
Spooky Sequences - Triangular Numbers
Spooky Sequences - Square Numbers
Spooky Sequences by ones
Spooky Sequences by twos
Spooky Sequences by threes
Spooky Sequences by 1's
Spooky Sequences by 2's
Spooky Sequences by 5's
Spooky Sequences by 10's
Spooky Sequences backward by 1's
Spooky Sequences backward by 2's
Spooky Sequences backward by 5's
Spooky Sequences backward by 10's
Guess the Number - Halving and Estimation
Multiplication Mystery
Speed Grid Challenge - Addition Level 2
Speed Grid Challenge - Addition Level 3
Speed Grid Challenge - Subtraction Level 2
Speed Grid Challenge - Subtraction Level 3
Speed Grid Multiplication
Subtraction Machine from Ambleweb
Sum Sense- Multiplication - Figuring out multiplication problems
Sum Sense- Division - Figuring out division problems
Times Tables from BBC
Tables Tester from Ambleweb
What2Learn Math Interactives
Utah Education Network


Cyberchase from PBSKids - Problem solving sound
Division Machine from Ambleweb
It's My Life from PBS Kids
Math Interactives from wickED
Measuring Angles
What2Learn Math Interactives

Middle School
Polygon Dissection Gallery
Sorting Bricks and Sticks
Truth and Beauty Math Interactives


Are You A Math Magician? - By Problem Type
Button Beach Challenge
Fun Brain Math - By Grade Level
Illustrated Lessons from LINKS - contain great short videos
Internet4 Classrooms Links - First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth Grade
Learning Box - Base10
Logical Thinking - Powerlines Levels 1, 2, 3

Compare web-based activities from two different developers above. How do they compare? Compare online math practice with off-computer practice. Select one website and brainstorm classroom management issues.

Math Tools

math toolsFrom pebbles to the abacus, people throughout history have used tools to help with calculation. Today, many tools are available for students to help them manipulate and visualize math concepts. Provide different tools to address individual ways of thinking about calculation and mathematical representations.

The Standards Site: Interactive Teaching Resources from UK has lots of great online tools to try.


Analog Clock
Number Facts
Ordering Numbers
Place Value
Sort Shape by Color and Shape
Sort Shapes by Angles
Sort Triangles and other Shapes
Tell the Time


Calculating Angles
Decimal Number Line
Multiplication Grid
Number Line
Sort Shapes by Angles
Twenty Cards


Area Grid Tool
Counting on a 100-bead String
Isometric Grid
Line Graph
Measuring Cylinder
Measuring Scale
Number Dial
Number Grid


Base 10 Blocks
Decifractator from Ambleside Primary
Decimal Number Line from Maths Online
Fraction Paint
- Fraction Paint 2x2
- Fraction Paint 3x3
- Fraction Paint 4x4
- Fraction Paint 5x5
- Fraction Paint 6x6
Frog in the Wall
Function Machine
Grapher - great a great graph!
Heads or Tails
Make a Bar Chart
Math Cats Multiplication
Percentage Pain
Splat Square 0-99
Splat Square 1-100
Super Sequencer

Explore at least five online tools (above) that help students work with math concepts. What off-computer activities are needed to guide the use of this tool? Will you print sample screens? Will you provide problems to solve? How will these tools be introduced in a large-group settings? How will individual students access the tools?
Pick one tool to explore indepth. Design a Word-based activity to will get students started using this tool. Brainstorm sample problems.

Return to Top

Real-world Data & Creative Math

realCombine real objects and manipulatives with computers and digital cameras. Some students see math as endless strings of numbers. Help them see the relevance of math in everyday life. Try FlyBy Math for example of math in Air Traffic Control (Grades 5-9).

Go to Math Hunt from Scholastic (Grade 5) for examples of how to integrate websites and make problems.

Ask students to create their own story problems and authentic math situations. Use the resources below to get started thinking about creative math problems.

Go to the National Math Trail and examine the submissions by state. Design an activity that involves students writing their own math problems and using digital cameras to visualize math.

Return to Top

Developed by Annette Lamb, 3/06.