Fun Ways to Help Your Child Love Math

Do you have a child that struggles to like math? We do.  What’s frustrating is that he is good at math!  But he seems to think it is the worst subject in the world.  We have a great math curriculum so I know that is not the problem but I have looked around to find different ways to incorporate math to show him that it’s useful and is fun.

My new friend, Corinne, has written this post on the subject that really brings up some fun ways to help your child love math.  She is guest blogging here today but you can find many more fun and helpful articles on teaching at her blog, Alternate Tutelage.  Here she is . . . 

Different Fun Ways to Make your Child Love Math 

Kids who struggle with math often spend their entire academic lives thinking of math as a horrible monster that will never go away. Making such kids love math can be challenging, so I put together this list of different fun ways to make your child fall in love with math.

“N is for Negative” by Angelia Sims, licensed under CC BY SA 2.0
“N is for Negative” by Angelia Sims, licensed under CC BY SA 2.0

Math Activities 

Whether it’s a hot summer’s afternoon, a long wait at the dentist’s or a seemingly endless road trip, any time is a great time to learn math. Encourage your child to explore the fascinating mathematical concepts that are found in nature – shapes, sizes and symmetry of leaves; counting the numbers and kinds of trees in your street; learning the different shapes and patterns in flowers – and so on. Your little mathematician will happily learn math if it is presented to him in the form of fun activities. Identify the kind of activities he enjoys and integrate math into it. For instance, if he loves to cook or bake, let him measure the ingredients, count items and estimate the amount of time required to cook specific things.

Math Games 

There are various kinds of games that indirectly help kids learn some aspect of math. They are effective because your child is more open to learning when he’s having fun and wants to keep doing whatever he’s doing. Math games come in different forms – board games, online math gamescard games, video games, puzzles, active playground games, etc. A well-designed math game allows players of all skill levels to participate and learn. They can teach new concepts or let kids practice previously learned concepts. Math games are your best friend if you want to make the subject interesting and help your child lose his inhibitions when he’s engaged in simple or advanced mathematical tasks. Talk about motivation!

Math-themed Books

Share books and stories that have mathematical themes but are also good entertainment. Big Fat Hen by K. Baker, for instance, features a hen that lays eggs whose numbers go up two until they reach a total of ten. Mrs. McTats and her Houseful of Cats by A. Capucilli talks about how Mrs. McTats adopts cats in multiples until she has 25 cats in her house. D. A. Carter’s How Many Bugs in a Box is all about measurements. Once your child starts enjoying math-themed stories, he will be able to see the underlying math in any book, in addition to developing a love for reading.

Did these ideas work for you? I’d love to hear about your experiences with kids and math!

Author Bio:

Corinne Jacob is a wannabe writer who is convinced that kids learn best when they’re having fun. She is constantly on the lookout for new and exciting ways to make learning an enjoyable experience. Corinne loves all things that scream out un-schooling, alternative education and holistic learning.

2 Comments

  1. Hi Corrine and Emily…so my Irish girls both love math…but it’s a love my husband and I have fostered. When they were itty-bitty we enrolled them in Kumon (yes! in Ireland no less) and they enjoyed it for the first few years. As they progressed through the system and the math got much harder it became a chore (especially because their homework became more burdensome at school). Next we got them interested in Khan Academy online and that was fun a while. Now my girls, both nearly teenagers, like the competitiveness of IXL.com. I even use it to hone my math skills.

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