Many adults do not like math. Others absolutely love it. Possibly because we had great teachers when we were young. Children do not learn like adults. They play. Even when learning math. In this guest article Cristin Howard explain how to teach kids math. Some of it reminded me of the third season of the classical “The Wire” series…
Teaching your kids math is a lot like teaching reading. You need patience and the tools to help support their learning style. Making it fun always helps make it easier.
Here are some fun math activities for your kids to complete, making it fun and exciting. You may even be able to sneak some learning in there, too!
Roll the Dice
Gather up all the dice from all the board games in the house and use them to learn math facts. As your child rolls, they have to add (or subtract) the digits together to figure out how many spaces they’re allowed to move.
Making a game out of it will make it fun and they won’t even realize they’re learning. The age of your child will dictate how many dice you should gather or how challenging you should make it for them.
Have a Flashcard Race
This game works best with multiple children. Set flashcards out in a line across the floor, choosing the appropriate difficulty for each child. Create a start and a finish line, and time how long it takes them to jump from flashcard to flashcard, yelling the answers out loud.
To make it easier on you, have them go one at a time, yelling the answers as they hop. Use a stopwatch and compare the times when everyone is done. Mix it up every time with new flashcards and watch them compete to beat each other out.
Pro tip: if you have a younger child and want to give them a bit of an edge, choose flashcards that are overly simple and watch them get them all correct. This can build confidence in their abilities, which in turn makes them better.
If you’re learning to count money, get a toy cash register and practice by playing store. You can take turns ringing each other up and counting out change. Choose the difficulty of the prices or the money you give based on your child’s abilities.
If you have a dartboard hanging around (see what I did there?), you can cover it in numbers and learn your math facts. Let the darts fly and add up the points after every turn. Have them aim for the highest numbers to win, but make the numbers manageable based on skill level.
If you don’t have a dartboard, you can draw a target on a large piece of poster paper, hang it on the wall, and use something sticky to throw at it. You can purchase sticky darts that will stick to the paper as you throw.
Use an Online Learning Tool
Online learning tools like ABC Mouse will guide your child through a lot of different lessons, including math. You can set up profiles for each of your children and feel comfortable with the safe interface that doesn’t have ads or other distracting things.
Give them 20 minutes a day to complete math activities that will engage them with colorful visuals and activities suited to their learning style.
Making learning fun for everyone will encourage a lot more progress than making it difficult or stressful. These fun math activities will make learning a game, allowing your child to relax and feel comfortable, even if they get a wrong answer.
Each one of them allows you to switch up the difficulty level and make it as challenging as needed depending on the skill level of your child. They don’t cost a lot, they use supplies you probably already have around the house, and they require little effort, too.
Author Bio: Cristin Howard runs Smart Parent Advice, a site that provides parenting advice for moms and dads. Cristin writes about all of the different ups and downs of parenting, provides solutions to common challenges, and reviews products that parents need to purchase.