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The following article is a companion piece to the LD@school webinar, Math Made Digital - Unlocking the Power of EquatIO. Click here to view the webinar recording. 

Answered by Anthony Howell, OCT, M.Ed, Assistive Technology Resource Teacher, Peel District School Board


EquatIO is truly a revolutionary tool that mathematicians have always wanted but never had. Its accessibility features allow students from all skill levels to enter into the world of mathematics, using the prior knowledge they already have. The end result, confidence and capacity building within the world of numeracy.

Differentiate Support with Virtual Manipulatives

EquatIO is loaded with virtual manipulatives that could be argued are quicker to use digitally than physically. Consider the copy and paste function when representing numbers using 3D base ten blocks in the thousands, like in the image below. 

virtual manipulatives differentiation math

The collection of Smart Shapes are pioneering tools that allow the user to customize the shape to fit the needs of their inquiry. For example, students with non-verbal learning disabilities,  who notoriously have difficulty learning math concepts and procedures, but are great at rote memorization, can use the interactive number line in the primary grades to practice skip counting by multiples of seven. 

number line differentiation math

Remove the need for visual-spatial organization with interactive fraction bars and circles. Students can represent any fraction in different forms while maintaining proportions. The virtual manipulatives in EquatIO are truly robust, and that is just the tip of the iceberg, there is a whole bank of manipulatives that EquatIO has to offer.

visual representation of fractions differentiation math

Differentiate Support with Equation Editor

Equation Editor holds the prediction power to bring forth the prior knowledge within every student. Students only need to know the sound or the first two letters in any mathematical term to have a list of terms with those letter combinations visible for use. Equation Editor can help students visually organize their math as well, like properly aligning numbers in addition or multiplication questions. Students with working memory issues will benefit from the instant retrieval of formulas used across every grade level.

equatio discoverability

Differentiate Support with EquatIO Accessibility Features

Students can use the Speech Input feature to record their math verbally, helping to circumvent the need for fine motor skills. The input software specifically targets math language and does not record the ums, likes, and errs.

Screenshot reader is a multi-faceted tool that allows you to listen to any math, both on a document sent by a teacher, or found on the world wide web. Turn on Discoverability when surfing the internet and any recognized math will be highlighted with a faint blue hue, allowing students to listen to and discover new math.

discoverability equatio quadratic equation

Take out the need to organize data by using the graphing calculator to build any style of graph, from bars to scatter plots.

graph examples equatio

Differentiate Mathematics Delivery Using EquatIO Dashboard

Teachers can create differentiated content in Mathspace and deliver it using a unique link that can be accessed across any virtual learning environment that the teacher works in. Create math sheets for students to practice on their own or expect a response from each student (or a specific group of students) to have assignments delivered to you, and provide the students with the real-time feedback they need to improve their math skills. 

You can also use Mathspace to deliver cross-curricular content such as Science or Social-Studies work as the program incorporates useful tools such a Venn-diagrams, a periodic table, and a molecular viewer. 

Share content with other teachers to build a collection of resources quickly and easily amongst school-based teams.

EquatIO: the Virtual Tool Necessary for Virtual Learning

EquatIO is not just a tool, but a whole new way of accessing mathematics in a revolutionary way. Unlock the powers already within students by allowing them to see themselves as experts in the field, as they use their prior knowledge to uncover their learning journey in mathematics online.

Additional Resources

Use the following links to explore EquatIO and its many features, further.



About the Presenter:

Anthony Howell received his M.Ed from OISE and has been teaching with the Peel District School Board since 2011, working specifically in K-8 environments and special education classrooms. His current assignment as an Assistive Technology Resource Teacher has Anthony supporting a superintendency of schools from K-12, helping facilitate staff and students in learning how to access the curriculum using various assistive technology devices.