Research-based recommendations for teaching students with learning disabilities as well as for students who are experiencing difficulties in learning mathematics but are not identified as having a math learning disability.

**Supporting Research**

Recently, the Center on Instructionconducted a meta-analysis on the topic of teaching mathematics to students with learning disabilities and other students struggling with mathematics. An outcome of the research is a resource called *Mathematics instruction for students with learning dis- abilities or difficulty learning mathematics: A guide for teachers *(Jayanthi, M., Gersten, R., Baker, S., 2008). The guide specifies research-based recommendations for teaching students with learning disabilities as well as for students who are experiencing difficulties in learning mathematics but are not identified as having a math learning disability.

**Application**

Following are a few of the evidence-based mathematics practices described in the guide for teachers that is noted above.

**1. Have students verbalize decisions and solutions to a math problem.**

Encourage students to verbalize, or Think-Aloud, their decisions and solutions to a math problem. Example: “That is a plus sign. That means I should…”

**Additional Resource: **K8 Access Center: http://k8accesscenter.org/index.php/category/math/

**2. Teach students using multiple instructional examples.**

Teachers should select a range of examples of similar problems.

Example: Fractions and algebraic equations can be taught first with concrete examples, then with pictorial representations, and finally in an abstract manner.

**Additional Resource: **Math VIDS: C-R-A Sequence of Instruction:

http://fcit.usf.edu/mathvids/strategies/cra.html

**3. Teach students to solve problems using multiple/heuristic strategies.**

Teachers can instruct students to use a heuristic; a method or strategy that exemplifies a generic approach for solving a problem. Heuristics are not problem-specific. They can be used in organizing information and solv- ing a range of math problems.

Example: “Read the problem. Highlight the key words. Solve the problem. Check your work.”

**Additional Resource: **University of Nebraska-Lincoln: Cognitive Strategy Instruction:

(broken link) http://www.unl.edu/csi/math.shtml

**Reference**

Jayanthi, M., Gersten, R., & Baker, S. (2008). *Mathematics instruction for students with learning disabilities or difficulty learning mathematics: A guide for teachers*. Retrieved on February 12, 2009 from (broken link)(broken link)