No child is born disliking maths. A positive attitude towards Maths can be taught from an early age. We tell you how.
The idea that Maths is a difficult or stressful subject is adopted as children make their way through school and often can be a direct result of their parent’s experience with the subject. Research has shown that parents' attitudes toward Maths have a direct impact on their children's attitudes. Children whose parents show an interest and enthusiasm for Mathematics around the home will be more likely to develop that enthusiasm themselves, even if the parent was not necessarily “good” at Maths in school.
Myths like: only smart kids can to be good at Maths; it isn’t used much in the real world after school; and, my parents were not good at Maths so they don’t expect me to be etcetera, need to be changed. In the midst of such myths, many students see the subject as a chore instead of an invaluable life skill. It is probable that your child will never have to do algebra in the real world. However, she will have to solve complex problems. It is important that kids become “creative problem solvers” who can think critically, creatively and mathematically.
Teachers also play a big part in keeping students on track and positive. If they are not enthusiastic about teaching the subject or make those “less mathematically inclined” feel insecure, chances are this will translate to the child in all facets of her life. Open communications with your child's Maths teacher can keep you in touch with how well he or she is progressing. Teachers tend to give more attention to students whose parents are more involved. This extra attention is not a matter of treating students unfairly, but when a teacher regularly communicates with one of their student’s parents, as a result, they start spending more time thinking about ways to better meet that student's individual needs.
Teaching something to someone else means you have to think about the best way to express your own understanding. This ultimately strengthens your grasp of the material. As a parent you can take advantage of this by allowing your child to teach to you what they have been taught. Work through the examples together and ask them questions. Let your child be the authority on what they are teaching you.
Our approach is "learning through play”. Maths should be introduced as fun games. “Play maths” with your child from a young age. By learning through play children will have the opportunity to see that maths can be fun and educational at the same time and not scary and difficult.
You might want to read more about how you can boost your child’s working memory.