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Many children find Math boring or difficult. Some hate math! Making kids love math is a challenge to most parents. Math skills take a lot of brain power to master, and this can be perceived by kids as hard work. But being skillful, or at least, competent in math is necessary to survive in modern life – irrespective of the field we choose. Math is used in everything from finances and construction projects to everyday chores such as cooking and shopping.
How about making math enjoyable to help kids learn to associate math with fun, pleasure and parental love? The secret to successful math learning is to make it so much fun that children do not realize they are learning something that will help them later in life.
Here are some ways to spice up the subject:
Play Math Games
Play engaging Math games together. Choose from puzzles like Tangrams, Sudoku or board games like Equate – The Equation Thinking Game or Math crosswords, Chutes, Ladders, and Monopoly.
Here are some more Games that you can play:
- Mancala / Chowkabara – teaches counting and strategy.
- Uno – Teaches Number recognition, less than and greater than, addition
- Blokus – Teaches Geometry, spatial skills, logic
Make Understanding Math Concepts Fun
Use engaging activities and tools to make learning concepts fun. Flash Cards, Tables, Diagrams, Flap books etc will help children visualize the concept and see the bigger picture. Use CPA (Concrete-Pictorial-Abstract) models to help children grasp the concept. Help children learn basic mathematical concepts like Patterns, Sequences, Seriation, Spatial Relationships, Sorting, Comparing etc. Since math is a sequential subject, learning, and understanding it depends on how well the basic foundational concepts are learnt.
Look up these many available ideas to make math fun.
Help children understand the purpose of Math
Children lose interest when they don’t know why they are learning something. So it’s important to constantly show them how math is useful in real life. Teach them why and how we will use the concept in real life – this will surely get them hooked to math.
Practice Math in Real life
Involve children in real-life activities like measuring, calculating, telling time, checking the temperature and using money. Get them to sort coins and help estimate the bill while shopping. If the child likes cricket ask them to calculate the batting averages. Engage children in “Math Talk” whenever possible. Ask questions like “How many apples do you think we can get in 1kg?” or “How many people are in this stadium?” When shopping ask them to find out which deals are better. Play math games on road trips too – like finding out time or distance to destination. Practice math in real-life will also help children hone their mental-math skills.
Talk about famous Mathematicians and their achievements
Talk about mathematicians like Carl Friedrich Gauss, Srinivas Ramanujam, and their achievements. Read biographies about them. You can also celebrate special days like “World Math Day” and “Pi Day”.
Show children how to persist and solve problems.
Math is about problem-solving. Show them how every problem has an answer and how they need to keep at it to solve it. Help them when they need it!
Read some wonderful math picture books
Read the Math themed picture books in this fabulous booklist.
Use Math Apps and Online Games
Model positive interest in Math
You may not have liked or been good at Math. But don’t tell that to your children! Instead, encourage them to embrace challenges and problem-solving.
Do you have any more ideas? Share it with us!