It may not seem like it is testing season but preparing students to access state assessments is very important throughout the school year. To use an accommodation in a state testing environment, a student must have that accommodation justified and documented in their IEP or 504 Plan. It should be included in their daily instruction to allow the student to be familiar with how to use it during testing.
Math Aids can be very helpful to guide students to understanding math concepts. But not all math aides can be used as accommodations to access state assessments. To make sure you are using Math Aids that are allowed, refer to the Explanation of Testing Accommodations for Students with Disabilities – Math Aids – Accommodation Code 19 (Revised 2017). Examples of math aids that are allowed and those not allowed are listed there. Number lines, graph paper, fraction circles/bars, base 10 blocks, blank clocks and more are allowed in addition to calculators. Approved calculators are listed in the Approved Calculators for the Virginia Standards of Learning Testing: Guidelines and Preparation Instructions for Testing (Revised 2017). In Spring 2019, an online calculator, the Desmos Online Calculator is scheduled to be included in TestNav software.
While they may be appropriate for learning, some accommodations may not be allowed during state assessments. Refer to the Virginia Department of Education, Students with Disabilities: Guidelines for Special Test Accommodations to ensure that all accommodations deemed appropriate for the student by the IEP team are allowed. Give your student ample time and practice during the school year to become familiar with using any and all accommodations.
Allsopp, D. H., Kyger, M. M., & Lovin, L. H. (2007). Teaching mathematics meaningfully: solutions for reaching struggling learners. Baltimore, MD: Paul H. Brookes Publishing.