Helping my child at home

Top Ten Ways to Help Your Kids Do Well in Math!

By Peggy Gisler, Ed.S. and Marge Eberts, Ed.S. Mastering mathematics is absolutely essential for future opportunities in school and careers. Here’s how you can help them maximize their “mathsmarts”.

  1. MAKE SURE YOUR CHILDREN UNDERSTAND MATH CONCEPTS.
    • Have your children use objects to figure out basic concepts.
  2. HELP THEM TO MASTER THE BASIC FACTS.
    • Mastery of a basic fact means that children can give an answer in less than three seconds. Try flash cards.
  3. TEACH THEM TO WRITE THEIR NUMBERS NEATLY.
    • 25% of all errors in solving math problems can be traced back to sloppy number writing. Try graph paper to help keep numbers lined up; let them trace over numbers you have written.
  4. PROVIDE HELP IMMEDIATELY WHEN YOUR CHILDREN NEED IT.
    • Math is a subject that is always building on what has been previously learned. Talk to the teacher about extra help if you don’t feel that you can give the proper help.
  5. SHOW THEM HOW TO HANDLE THEIR MATH HOMEWORK.
    • Homework should reinforce classroom skills. Show your child how to use the textbook or worksheet examples.
  6. ENCOURAGE YOUR CHILDREN TO DO MORE THAN THE ASSIGNED PROBLEMS.
    • Most children need a lot of practice! The more time your child spends practicing, the sooner they will develop confidence in their math abilities!
  7. EXPLAIN HOW TO SOLVE WORD PROBLEMS.
    • Read the problem several times. Make a diagram to “show” the problem.
  8. HELP YOUR CHILDREN LEARN THE VOCABULARY OF MATHEMATICS.
    • Ask your child to define new math terms or use models and simple problems to show that they understand how the term is used.
  9. TEACH THEM HOW TO DO MATH “IN THEIR HEAD”.
    • Mental math can be used for many problems. Help them determine when it’s appropriate to use mental math.
  10. MAKE MATHEMATICS PART OF YOUR CHILDREN’S DAILY LIFE.
    • Math will become more meaningful when your kids see how important it is in so many real-life situations. Encourage them to use math in practical ways. For example, ask them to space new plants a certain distance apart, double a recipe, and pay bills in stores.

What can I do to help my children do well in school?

  • Encourage individuality
  • Give children incentives
  • Praise them for a job well done
  • Set a good example
  • Make sure attendance is good
  • Maintain a positive attitude
  • Answer questions and provide explanations
  • Teach patience and respect
  • Use homework helpline
  • Read with the children
  • Attend parent/teacher meetings
  • Enroll in school (as parent)
  • Utilize the school on Saturdays
  • Expand on child’s school work
  • Show children how school work relates to their life
  • Ask the teacher where child needs help
  • Read directions to him/her
  • Turn off the television and video games
  • Have other children help
  • Get involved with a tutoring program
  • Give your children assignments that believe might help
  • Point out the little things
  • Give them responsibility
  • Promote hands on activities
  • Allow the children to “get messy”
  • Teach children cleaning skills
  • Show children how school work relates to their life
  • Be involved all the time

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