Cuisenaire Rods Extravaganza!

I am a huge fan of Cuisenaire Rods.  They are probably the most versatile concrete material I’ve come across and can be used to teach such a vast array of mathematical ideas in ways that pupils (and adults) can really make sense of.

I frequently come across schools who assure me they have no Cuisenaire Rods only to find deep trays of old faded wooden rods hidden away in a cupboard or in a draw that someone thought was just some wooden construction blocks for the P1s to play with… it is so much more than this!

If you haven’t ever come across or used Cuisenaire Rods, I can almost guarantee they will change your life (from the perspective of teaching maths anyway).

Here are a couple of older videos from the 60s with their extensive use being highlighted by Dr Caleb Gettagno.

This first one is one of three…  you can find the others on YouTube if you are so inclined (they are worth a watch)

And another here exploring them in a slightly different way:

If you want to read and learn more about Cuisenaire Rods, you can check out this free ATM open resource: Working with Rods and Why

Or you can follow this link for a series of books by Gettagno himself (all available for free online):  (Scroll down to find the titles… some are related to subjects other than maths.)

So, what are you waiting for!  Go and have a look in that dusty old cupboard and dig out the Cuisenaire.  If it’s not there then see if you can encourage your school to purchase some – it is definitely worth it!

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