Recently, I discovered a free visual and hands-on math curriculum from The Math Learning Center, a non-profit organization that grew out of a National Science Foundation project.

The curriculum is for Pre-K through 5th grade and it may be helpful as an addition to some students’ math learning or possibly as a standalone.

What is helpful about the curriculum is that students are taught concepts several ways – for instance place value is taught with regrouping popsicle sticks (experiential / personal or episodic memory), while paper and pencil work reinforces math learning with visual examples, and then finally pencil and paper number work. The curriculum involves games and supports multiple ways of solving problems.



Here’s an assistant superintendent providing an overview of the curriculum.


Many parents didn’t learn math with hands-on activities such as this, so without a systematic approach, it might be hard to teach students who need this.

Look at their excellent variety of free math lessons and downloadables.

There are core curriculum activities like Learning to Think Mathematically (K-15), Math and the Mind’s Eye (K-12), and Algebra Through Visual Patterns (5-12+).

For parents or math tutors who want to encourage math enrichment, there are a wide variety activities for K-5 students in their Math at Home series, too.


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