Math Manipulatives are an extremely important part of learning math and should be incorporated in daily lessons as often as possible. Manipulatives give the student the ability to connect mathematical concepts and symbols to physical objects, and in turn this helps cement learning. What are manipulatives? Any sort of concrete object such as counters, unifix cubes, place value blocks, an abacus, etc. But you really don't need to break the bank to fill your learning center with math manipulatives.