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21 July, 2023

A Practical Guide to Math for Parents: How to Help Your Child


We all know that the key to mathematics isn’t just about memorizing formulas or rules. It’s about logical reasoning, problem-solving skills, and the ability to think in abstract ways.

Children, in particular, may need a gentle push, a guiding hand, and a bucket load of patience to understand the many nuances of this fascinating subject. Parents often find themselves pondering, “How can I help my child with math?”

Fear not! This practical guide will give you the tools and techniques you need to aid your child’s journey through the wonderful world of mathematics.

1. Build a Strong Foundation

First and foremost, ensure that your child understands the basics. These are the building blocks upon which every other mathematical concept is based.

  • Numbers and counting: Start with simple counting, then progress to more complex calculations.
  • Basic operations: The four pillars of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division should be firmly ingrained.
  • Shapes and spatial awareness: Understanding simple shapes and their properties is a gateway to geometry.

2. Utilize Online Resources

The internet is a vast treasure trove of educational resources specifically designed to make learning math fun and engaging for children.

  • Interactive learning platforms: Websites like Khan Academy offer free, high-quality education.
  • Educational Apps: Apps like Photomath and Prodigy Game make learning math interactive and enjoyable.
  • Online tutors: If you’re too busy or find a concept particularly challenging, online tutors can provide personalized teaching.

3. Engage in Practical Math

Bring math into your everyday life and make it tangible for your child. This will help them understand the real-world applications of what they learn.

  • Baking and cooking: Measurements, conversions, fractions, and timing all involve math.
  • Shopping: Teach them about money, pricing, discounts, and budgeting.
  • Gardening: A practical way to learn about area, perimeter, and volumes.

4. Encourage a Growth Mindset

Remember, mistakes are a part of the learning process. Foster a growth mindset in your child by teaching them to embrace their mistakes and learn from them.

  • Praise effort over results: Recognize their hard work and persistence.
  • Positive reinforcement: Instead of pointing out errors, suggest ways they can improve.
  • Show patience: Everyone learns at their own pace. Be patient and supportive.

5. Make Math Fun

Last but not least, keep math enjoyable. Whether it’s through games, puzzles, or fun activities, learning math should never feel like a chore.

  • Board games: Games like Monopoly and Uno can teach kids about numbers, strategy, and probability.
  • Puzzles: Sudoku and crosswords improve logical reasoning and problem-solving.
  • Math-based apps: Combine technology with learning to make math fun.

With this guide, helping your child learn math will no longer be an uphill battle, but a rewarding journey. As the famous saying goes, “Mathematics is not about numbers, equations, computations, or algorithms: it is about understanding.”