Futurewiz is the exclusive distributor in Australia of the US-developed Digi-Block. Digi-Block is a manipulative-based
mathematics tool that effectively teaches base-10 number sense, place value and operations.
The core of Digi-Block is a system of small rectangular-shaped blocks and holders that enable children to discover the important relationship between ones and tens, a concept crucial to understanding arithmetic operations.
The single blocks or "ones" pack into the small holders to make larger blocks or "tens". The unique design allows the holders to close only when there are exactly 10 single blocks inside.
Another distinguishing feature of Digi-Block is that a block of 10 looks exactly the same as a single block, except that it is 10 times larger in volume.
These two unique features make Digi-Block an accurate model of the base-10 number system. It also provides an understanding of place value. For example, in the number 28, the first digit represents two blocks of 10 and the second digit represents eight single blocks.
Ten blocks of 10 can then be packed into the larger holders to create a block of 100. This block looks the same as the block of 10, except that it is 10 times larger in volume. Again, the unique design will not allow the holders to close unless there are exactly 10 blocks of 10 inside the block of 100. The progression is repeated with 10 blocks of 100 packed into the large holder making a block of 1000.
No matter how large or small the blocks get, they stay the same in two important ways: (1) they do not close to make a larger block until there are ten one-size-smaller blocks inside (2) when a new block is formed, it looks exactly like the others, except for the size.
In addition to teaching base-10 number sense and place value, the blocks also accurately model addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The modeling is made even clearer with the use of accessories such as counters, number lines and array mats. Decimals are also modeled using smaller tenth and hundredth blocks. Printed guides are available for teachers as well as activity books for students.
(text and photos above adapted from the Digi-Block website)
To watch a short video about the product, click here
For more information about Digi-Block, go to: www.digiblock.com
Watch this space for other forthcoming educational products.