Math Resources

Math teachers of students who are blind or visually impaired will find resources and teaching strategies for mathematics and other number concepts in this section.

The APH report was conducted in 2005-2006 to analyze mathematics research and studies that meet the criteria for evidence-based practice.

Source: American Printing House for the Blind (APH)

APH has recently released a new math app!

A landing page of links to current research on the topic of math education and math accessibility.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

Susan Osterhaus offers suggestions for materials, activities, and resources to help young children develop simple mathematical concepts.

Source: Susan's Math Technology Corner, Texas School for the Blind (TSBVI)

Kara Furlong's multi-media article discusses a new pen computer that may help students with a visual impairment study science and math. She also reports on a grant to address "learning among blind college students in the STEM content areas – science, technology, engineering and math."

Source: Vanderbilt University

The Paths to Literacy Project gathers strategies shared by professionals in the field. This resource bank is specific to the mathematics curriculum.

Source: Paths to Literacy

Includes both Math and ELA (English/Language Arts). These frameworks are based on the same Maryland Common Core Curriculum Frameworks that were adopted by the State Board and include the identified braille skills and expectations at each grade level (Pre-kindergarten through grade 12) for students who read braille. The standards provide a clear roadmap of braille instruction for teachers and parents to improve literacy skills for students who read braille.

Source: Maryland School Performance

Includes both Math and ELA (English/Language Arts). These frameworks are based on the same Maryland Common Core Curriculum Frameworks that were adopted by the State Board and include the identified braille skills and expectations at each grade level (Pre-kindergarten through grade 12) for students who read braille. The standards provide a clear roadmap of braille instruction for teachers and parents to improve literacy skills for students who read braille.

These links for teachers whose math students are blind or visually impaired include tips for classroom accommodations, advice for reading math aloud to students, and information about assistive technology.

Source: Equal Access to Software and Information (EASI)

Although not aimed at parents of children with visual impairments, this site has useful general information, including strategies for teaching big mathematical concepts, activities that reinforce math skills in the daily routine, and links to additional resources.

Source: U.S. Department of Education

International Council for Education of People with Visual Impairment (ICEVI), Overbrook School for the Blind, and The Nippon Foundation collaborated on this teaching methods manual that includes use of the traditional abacus and Nemeth braille code.

Source: A Publication of ON-NET/ICEVI

Collection of videos includes abacus, calculators, low tech math tools, and Nemeth

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

An annotated bibliography of Mathematics information on the World Wide Web, compiled and reviewed by the NCAC. This resource is not dated. Some web addresses may have changed.

Source: National Center on Accessing the General Curriculum

Questions, answers, and differing opinions about the use of Nemeth Code in math education.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired and Department of Assistive and Rehabilitative Servi

An outline for teaching Nemeth code. She includes strategies for teaching young adults who are newly blind and adults who are new to Nemeth. Links to learning resources are provided. 

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

The PhET Interactive Simulations project at the University of Colorado Boulder creates free interactive math and science simulations. PhET sims are based on extensive education research and engage students through an intuitive, game-like environment where students learn through exploration and discovery.

PhET is committed to making the simulations accessible to all learners.  Their accessible simulations include: verbal descriptions and feedback, the use of sound and music to represent foundational science and mathematics relationships, and alternative navigation that moves beyond mouse or touch inputs. They are creating research-based, accessible STEM education resources to ensure that all students can experience the benefits of PhET Interactive Simulations.

The site includes teaching resources, with tips and strategies for including simulations in the classroom. They encourage teachers to share activities on the site.

 

​This online handbook covers the range, from basic number facts to advanced mathematics, and includes a handbook for spoken mathematics.

Source: Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired (TSBVI)

For your students with low vision who have to graph equations, and of course have to use graphing calculators, here is an inexpensive option you may want to consider. The following app was designed by William Jockush.  He would appreciate your feedback at: MathSciGraphCalc2@gmail.com

  1. The student must have an iPad (or Android tablet) since viewing these things on an iPhone doesn't provide enough screen to take advantage of its new features.
  2. In the App Store, find the app called "Scientific Graphing Calculator 2":  https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/scientific-graphing-calculator/id1066347637?mt=8   The developer is William Jockush and the current version costs 99 cents.  He has a free iPhone/iPad version which does NOT include the bold lines and print, and a 99 cent version that DOES include them. However, I think the Android version includes those features on the free app.  Free version:  https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/free-graphing-calculator/id378009553?mt=8
  1. This graphing calculator seems simple to use.  The  "explanations" of concepts are good and it has been previewed by low vision colleagues who liked it.
  2. The size of the graphs are larger than any hand-held scientific graphing calculator.  The updated version is even better because it includes (in Settings) the ability to choose larger fonts--and they are clear and readable--and there are bolder lines for the graphs.  It gives you a graph the size of your screen that is super-readable!  I expect these changes will make this app accessible to a lot more of our low vision students.

Many thanks to Margaret Edwards from Special Programs at TSBVI for bringing this excellent product to my attention.

In these videos from Texas School for the Blind and Visually Impaired Susan Osterhaus presents information on the Orion TI-36X Talking Scientific Calculator in multiple videos, including:

  • Accessories
  • Features
  • Basic Arithmetic
  • Fractions
  • Simple Algebraic Computations
  • Usefulness and Affordability

This free webcast with Susan Osterhaus discusses the importance of the Nemeth Code, producing accessible math materials, applying a multi-sensory approach and universal design to math instruction, technology tools for students who are blind and visually impaired, helpful teaching aids for students and teachers, and issues and challenges with standardized testing.

Source: Perkins eLearning

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