When it comes to math, children have different learning capabilities, regardless of their age. Some kids can easily and quickly understand and master mathematical concepts, formulas, and applications. Others, however, will need more time and practice to grasp anything they learn under this particular subject. For preschoolers, helping them develop an interest in math will go a long way in enabling them to be naturally curious. This curiosity will act as the spark that will encourage them to continue learning about this subject and build the skills they need, even when the topics become harder and more complex.
This healthy, positive attitude towards math will empower children, regardless of their level, to perform well and even excel in this subject throughout their years of studying.
How to Help Preschoolers Find Math Enjoyable and Interesting?
To help children become more confident in learning math, educators from best British nursery school in Dubai employ various tactics and methods to teach math in a fun, interesting way.
Here are four of their most effective strategies and tips:
1. Let kids play math games inside the classroom
Preschoolers love to play games. In order to successfully boost children’s interest in math, it is important to give them fun activities to play or do that revolve around the subject. Letting children play with sorting activities and blocks is an excellent way to start introducing the concept of geometry to them. If you want more structured activities you can do at home with your child, board games like “Monopoly” and “‘Snakes & Ladders’” are great and will certainly turn math into fun exercises. Simple card games like “Go Fish” and “Crazy 8s” also facilitate the development of mental math in kids in an entertaining way. Set a schedule to let your children play these math games once or twice a week. By doing so, you will help them practice and remember the skills they learned. Additionally, regular math games will enable the kids to get mental workouts.
2. Give short, simple math problems for the children to solve at home
At such a young age, giving nursery students homework is usually unheard of. This is because most teachers and parents do not want kids to be mentally overworked and exhausted. However, giving preschoolers simple mental math problems or a number puzzle to work on during the week is a great way to get children familiar with maths activities. They will also start developing some research skills. In the long run, children will learn how to start using books or the Internet to find answers or assistance in doing their homework. If children will bring homework home, make sure it is simple and easy.
3. Use the children’s names
When giving out simple math problems for your children, ensure that you use the right vocabulary, and use the children’s names as part of the problem’s characters. When the children read or hear the addition or subtraction problem with their names or their classmates involved, they will be more interested in solving it. Using children’s name in math problems is definitely an excellent way to get and sustain their attention at home when doing maths activities.
4. Show children how they can use math in real life
Lastly, preschoolers tend to lose interest and even forget things if they do not understand the purpose of what they are learning. Because of this, it is vital that you show them the value of basic concepts in mathematics so they can start using them in real life.
To help children understand the importance of math in real life, offer children an array of activities they can replicate at home, too. For example, when cooking or baking, it is fun to explain the importance of using the recipe’s recommended quantities to make sure there is a successful outcome. There are a lot of other math concepts which can be easily taught on a daily basis including telling the time, doing the grocery shopping list with the child, or paying for purchases.
With STEM as one of the most critical areas of learning and specialization children will be studying for many years, it is critical to help children establish an excellent foundation and set them on the right path by making them understand that math is fun, useful, and relevant.
Alan Williamson is the Chief Education Officer at Kings’ Education, a premium school brand in Dubai which leads a fantastic group of premium UK curriculum schools, including Child’s Play Nursery. As well as being passionate about teaching and learning, Alan has been actively involved in school leadership related to Special Educational Needs.