Least Intensive Interventions 
Number Search
Materials: A place from which to observe, paper and a pencil
Intervention: Create a chart that lists the numbers from 150. Write down each number as
family members locate that number on a car, a sign, a building, etc. Write down words that have
numbers in them, such as “onestop shopping,” “twoday service,” or “Highway 20.” This is a
great challenge for family members of all ages, because even young children can learn to
recognize numbers.
Courtesy of:
http://www.ed.gov/pubs/parents/Math/OnTheGo.html 
“CoverCopyCompare”
Category: Math Skills
Grade: May use with any age group. Activity is dependent on current curriculum
Materials: Teacher prepared worksheets with computation problems with answers on the left
side of the sheet. Completed computation problems appear on the right side of the page,
unsolved.
Intervention: When first introducing CoverCopyCompare worksheets to the student, the
teacher gives the student an index card. The student is then directed to look at each correct
computation on the left side of the page. Then the student is instructed to cover the correct
model on the left side of the page with an index card and to copy the problem and compute the
correct answer in the space on the right side of the sheet. The student then uncovers the correct
answer on the left and checks his or her own work. If the use of an index card proves distracting
you may simply fold the worksheet in half lengthwise so that the answers appear on one side of
the folded worksheet and the answer blanks appear on the other side.
An advantage of this intervention is the ability of the child to work independently and correct his
or her work. It’s important that the student does not just copy the problems. He or she must
study the completed computation, then work to solve the problem autonomously. If the child
needs to be supervised, the use of a peer may tutor may be helpful.
Courtesy of:
http://www.interventioncentral.org/htmdocs/interventions/ccc.shtml 
More or Less
Materials: Coin, 2 decks of cards, Scratch paper to keep score
Age or Grade: KindergartenGrade 2
Intervention: This game encourages number sense and helps children learn about the
relationships of numbers and about adding and subtracting. By counting the shapes on the cards
and looking at the printed numbers on the card, they can learn to relate the number of objects to
the numeral.
First flip a coin to tell if the winner of this game will be the person with “more” (a greater value
card) or “less” (a smaller value card). Remove all face cards and divide the remaining cards in the
stack between the two players. Place the cards face down. Each player turns over one card and
compares: Is mine more or less? How many more? How many less?
Courtesy of:
http://www.ed.gov/pubs/parents/Math/Home.html 
Money Match
Materials: a die to roll, 10 of each coin (penny, nickel, dime), 6 quarters
Intervention: This game helps children count change. Lots of repetition will make it even
more effective. For young players (5and 6yearolds), use only 2 different coins (pennies and
nickels or nickels and dimes). Older children can use all coins. Explain that the object of the
game is to be the first player to earn a set amount (10 or 20 cents is a good amount). The first
player rolls the die and gets the number of pennies shown on the die. Players take turns rolling
the die to collect additional coins. As each player accumulates 5 pennies or more, the 5 pennies
are traded for a nickel. The first player to reach the set amount wins. Add the quarter to the
game when the children are ready. Counting money, which involves counting by 1’s , 5’s, 10’s and
25’s is a challenging skill and usually does not come easily to children until about the third grade.
Courtesy of:
http://www.ed.gov/pubs/parents/Math/Home.html 
Math Word Problem Strategies
Intervention:

Make certain the student’s inability to read is not the cause of his/her difficulty.

Teach the student to look for “key words” that will indicate the math operation. Make or provide a list of these key words.

Before introducing complete word problems, present the student with word phrases to be translated into numbers (six less than ten equals 106).

Provide the student with a checklist to follow in solving math story problems.

Make the situation interesting to the student. Have the student make up story problems
Reference: McCarney, The Teacher’s Resource Guide, Hawthorne 
Difficulty With Word Problems
Age or Grade: Grade 6 – Grade 8
 Intervention #1 – The teacher may ask the student to identify the primary question
that must be answered to solve a given word problem. The teacher should continue this activity using more difficult word problems containing two or more questions, making sure the student understands the questions are often implied rather than directly asked.
 Intervention #2 – The teacher can have the student make up word problems. Direct
the student to write problems involving specific operations. Other students in the classroom should be required to solve these problems. The student can also provide answers to his/her own problems.
 Intervention #3 – The teacher can speak with the student to explain: (a) what the
student is doing wrong (e.g., using the wrong operation, failing to read the problem carefully, etc.) and (b) what the student should be doing (e.g., using the appropriate operation, reading the problem carefully, etc.)
Reference: McCarney, S.B., Cummins Wunderlich, K., Bauer,A, (1994). The Teacher’s
Resource Guide: Columbia, MO. 
Collaborative Problem Solving
Collaborative problem solving can take the form of longterm projects or shorter activities
that can be completed in a single class period or less. Students enjoy puzzles in which each
person in a group of four is given a different clue and the clues must be combined to reach the
solution. Both number sense and mental math skills are developed when students are challenged
to find a number which is even, is a multiple of three, has an integral square root and has two
digits.
Reference: Cole, R.W, (1995). Educating Everybody’s Children: Diverse Teaching Strategies
for Diverse Learners. Alexandria, Va. ASCD 
Small Group
Small Class Size (1317 Students) – There are lasting benefits in mathematics achievement at
grade 9 when students are in small class sizes in the early grades.
Courtesy of:
The University of Chicago School “Everyday Mathematics” http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu/ 
Addition TopIt
Materials: A set of number cards with four cards each of the numbers 010, a penny (optional)
Number of Players: 2 or 3
Directions: A player shuffles the cards and places the deck numberside down on the playing
surface. Each player turns over two cards and calls out their sum. The player with the highest
sum wins the round and takes all the cards.
In the case of a tie, each player turns over two more cards and calls out their sum. The player with
the highest sum then takes all the cards from both plays.
Play ends when not enough cards are left for each player to have another turn. The player with
the most cards wins.
Option: Children toss a penny to determine whether the player with the most or the fewest
cards wins.
Game Variations
 Use a set of doublenine dominoes instead of a set of number cards to generate addition
problems. Place the dominoes face down on the playing surface. Each player turns over a domino and calls out the sum of the dots on the two halves. The winner of a round takes all the dominoes then in play.
 To practice addition with three addends, use three cards.
Courtesy of:
The University of Chicago School “Everyday Mathematics”http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu/ 
Name that Number
Materials: 4 cards each of numbers 010 and 1 card each of numbers 1120
Number of Players: 3 or 4
Directions: A player shuffles the deck and places five cards faceup on the playing surface.
This player leaves the rest of the deck face down and then turns over and lays down the top card
from the deck. The number on this card is the number to be named.
In turn, players try to (re)name the number on the setapart top card by adding or subtracting the
numbers on two of the five faceup cards.
A successful player takes both the two faceup cards and the numbernamed top card. A
successful player also replaces those three cards by drawing from the top of the face down deck.
Unsuccessful players lose their turns. But they turn over and lay down the top card from the
face down deck, and the number on this card becomes the new number to be named.
Play continues until all face down cards have been turned over. The player who has taken the
most cards at the end wins.
Example:
Mae’s Turn:
Mae’s Cards
The number to be named is 6. It may be named with 4+2, 82 or 104. Mae selects 4+2. She takes the 4, 2 and 6 cards. She replaces the 4 and 2 cards
with the top two cards from the face down deck and then turns over and lays down the next card to replace the 6.
Mike’s Turn:
Mike’s Cards
The new number to be named is 16. Mike can’t find two cards with which to
name 16, so he loses his turn. He also turns over the next card from the face down deck and places it on top of 16, and the number on this card becomes the new number to be named.
Play continues as before.
Game Variations:
 If children are finding the game difficult, increase the number of faceup cards.
 Use any combinations of two or more numbers and all operations. For example, Mike could have named 16 as follows:
 10+71
 10+127+1
 8+1210+71
 Children can experiment by using different numbers of faceup cards.
Courtesy of:
The University of Chicago School “Everyday Mathematics”http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu/ 
TwoFisted Pennies Game
Materials: 10 pennies for each player
Number of Players: 2 or more
Directions: Players count out 10 pennies, and then split them between their two hands. (Help
children identify their left and right hands.) Call on several children to share their amounts. For example: “My left hand has 1 and my right
hand has 9; left hand 3 and right hand 7; left hand 4 and right hand 6; left hand 5 and right hand
5.” Record the various splits for any given number on the chalkboard.
Partners continue to play using different total numbers of pennies – for example, 9, 12, 20.
Option: Partners take turns grabbing one part of a pile of 20 pennies. The other partner takes
the remainder of the pile. Both players count their pennies, secretly. The partner making the
grab uses the count to say how many pennies must be in the partner’s hand. (“I have 12, so you
must have 8.” The eventual result is many addition names for 20.
Change the number of pennies in the pile to practice addition names for other numbers.
Courtesy of:
The University of Chicago School “Everyday Mathematics” http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu/ 
Beat the Calculator
Materials: a calculator; a penny or a randomnumber generator (optional); 1 Fact Power Table
(optional)
Number of Players: 3
Directions: One player is the “Caller,” a second player is the “Calculator,” and the third is the “Brain.” The “Caller” selects a fact problem by dropping a penny on Game Master 7 or by using a
randomnumber generator to create an additionfact problem. The “Calculator” then solves the
problem with a calculator while the “Brain” solves it without a calculator. The “Caller” decides
who got the answer first.
Players trade roles every 10 turns or so.
Taken from K3 Everyday Mathematics Teacher’s Reference Manual.
Courtesy of:
The University of Chicago School “Everyday Mathematics” http://everydaymath.uchicago.edu/ 
General Math Strategies
Strategies for factual learning:
1. Counton, countby, touchmath, etc.
2. Use for students when the data shows it’s working
Strategies for complex problems:
1. “Daddy, Mother, Sister, Brother” – Steps for long division. Divide, Multiple, Subtract,
Bring down
Strategies for solving wordproblems:
1. Provide an advance organizer (tell students what they will learn and why).
2. Explicitly model strategic behavior using thinkaloud approach.
3. Give guided practice.
4. Provide feedback during independent practice.
Courtesy of:
Using Progress Monitoring as DataBased DecisionMaking: Materials for Trainers, Presentation for ESU #1, Spring 2006, Dr. Erica Lembke, University of Missouri 
Number Sense
The student will understand numbers, ways of representing numbers, relationships among
numbers and number systems. Start teaching with categories: counting, reading and writing
number symbols and words, relationships among whole numbers, place value, estimation.

Counting strategy: Rote counting intervention: Each day, practice counting up to
the highest number the student reached on the previous day. If mastered, add two more
numbers. If not, practice numbers from the previous day. Practice counting with 1, but
also beginning and ending with other numbers (i.e., begin at 8 and stop at 17). This leads to counting strategies that will be helpful in addition. Also, have the student count backwards.

Rational counting: Counting items (concrete or pictorial) in a picture (need 11
correspondence). Given two groups of objects, student will count how many altogether.

Ordinal counting: Identify ordinal position of objects in a line (first, second, third, etc.)

Skip counting: Count objects/pictures by 2’s, 5’s, and 10’s to 100. Skip count by 2’s, 5’s,
and 10’s orally. Recognize and extend patterns by filling in missing numbers.

Number symbols: Say names when shown number symbols. Write numbers given the oral number name.

Number words: Read number words. Write number words that are presented orally.

Writing numbers sequences: Write the missing numerals that fill in the sequence.

Symbol quantity match: Match number symbols to correct quantities of pictorial or concrete objects. Count out objects that match a given number symbol.

Onetoone correspondence between groups: Match objects from one group to
objects in another using 11 correspondence.

Quality comparison: Are groups of objects equal in number? Which group has more
or fewer? Arranging groups of objects in order from smallest to largest. Use symbols <, >, =. Identify number that is greater than, less than or equal to.

Place value: “Trade” ones to make tens. Identify the numbers from concrete or
pictorial representations of base 10 blocks. Represent numbers with base 10 blocks.

Column alignment: Align 2 numerals with differing numbers of digits vertically.

Expanded notation: Rewrite multidigit numbers as addition problems.

Place value recognition: Identify the value of each place in a digitalis number.

Base ten identification: Given a number, identify 1 or 10 more or less.

Estimation: Estimate how many concrete or pictorial objects are in a group.
Courtesy of:
Using CurriculumBased Measurement (CBM) within a Response to Intervention System:
Data Utilization, Presentation for ESU #1, January 2007, Dr. Erica Lembke, University of
Missouri. 