Teaching functional math skills entails a lot of different skills to use in functional daily living. Sometimes, it takes cleverness and ingenuity to teach these skills in a way that will click for our students with special needs.
Teaching the retail and sales class in my school, it encompasses teaching a lot of functional math skills. I was really intimidated to be honest! I am much more of an ELA type of teacher. However, it has really giving me a chance to extend myself and think about how many small skills are the building blocks of adaptive skills we need in our everyday lives. Here are a few of my favorite items for teaching functional math skills.
Color-Coded Analog Clock
Reading an analog clock is an important skill, but it’s one of those that encompasses a lot of smaller skills to be efficient . This clock helps learn a lot of foundational skills. My favorite feature is that the minute and hour hands are labeled. The clock is also divided in to four different colors, and is labeled to help identify the language used to describe different times (half, past, quarter past etc.) for more advanced learners.
Large Screen and Button Calculator
If you are typically developing, it might be easy to overlook that calculators usually have super tiny buttons. I have several students this year that I noticed were struggling with visually scanning our small calculators and it was preventing them from being able to use a calculator. This was one of those situations where the student had the skill, but the materials we had were a problem. I bought a few of these and the students who need them haven’t had an issue since!
ATM Piggy Bank
It’s not so easy to practice ATM skills unless a student or client actually has a debit card. In a school setting, though, that is generally not possible. This piggy bank is a good way to practice using an atm (not perfect, but a help).
I have loved this calculator for the same reason I love the money calculator. There’s no real way to add fractions on a regular calculator (unless you use decimals, which is another skill you have to teach.
Fractions Measuring Cups
These looks super weird but it’s a great way to visually show fractions. I have incorporated this in to my cooking lessons in a way to target math.
Do you own any of these items?