Rugged plastic inclined board upon which students can arrange the blocks according to place (hundreds, tens, ones). An ejection feature allows no more than 9 blocks in each place. The 3-Place Counter features a whiteboard dry-erase writing surface and pen and dials for displaying digits.
3-Place 60 cm x 38 cm (24" x 15")
Digi-Blocks are a fantastic resource for helping children to understand conceptually and not merely procedurally how our place value system works. Young students build understanding of the unitizing of ones into countable groups of ten. Unlike other materials, the ones can still be seen and manipulated to help those students who don't 'trust the count'; they can see the ones they have already counted within the blocks of ten and one hundred.
For older students, the proportional growth of the packs of ten, hundred, and thousand lead to conversations about the ongoing relative proportion of how physically large quantities are as they get ten times larger; it is consistently a surprise to them how much space one million would take up as they are led to visualize how large ten thousand would be, how large one hundred thousand would be, and low large one million would be. In this way, the students conceptually understand that even though we only add one digit to the number, we are making the quantity so much larger. In a similar way, the decimal fractions set allows older students to actually see how much smaller one-tenth and one one-hundredth is.
For learning resource teachers working with older struggling students, using Digi-Blocks provides opportunities to experience sense-making with the very concepts students struggle with most: place value, multiplication, and decimal fractions. Having a set of Digi-Blocks should be a required manipulative for every school.
K-8 Mathematics Instructional Coach for Area 3
District School Board of Niagara