How to Make Maths More Real, Relevant and Fun
Maths is one of the most important lessons you learn at school and the skills you learn in these classes are utilised every day of your life. However, it is no secret that many children don’t like it – finding it difficult and boring. But I don’t think so!
With that in mind, I’ve been chatting to Maths-Whizz – provider of interactive maths programs – about how to make maths more relatable and fun.
We hear it quite often; children questioning why they have to learn something they’re never going to use in ‘real life’… or will they? We use mathematics every day. However, we simply don’t recognise it.
You will use addition when buying items in a shop, fractions when cooking, and multiplication when measuring a space. You may even use more specialised topics, such as Pythagoras’ theorem – painters use it when calculating the height their ladders needs to be and shoppers use it when looking for TV or computer screens.
Giving children real life examples will make maths real and show it’s useful. You could even try verbalising your sums when completing everyday tasks together. Whether that’s adding up the cost of your weekly shop as you add to your trolley, counting the number of blue cars you pass on the road, or counting down the hours until bedtime.
Make it Fun
It’s not uncommon for children to do better in subjects that they enjoy, so making maths fun can only help their engagement.
A simple way of doing this is by investing in board games. Traditional board games like Monopoly and more modern favourites like Head Full of Numbers teach basic maths skills such as counting and addition. Plus, they’re a great bonding activity, providing something fun for all the family to do together.
Another way of making maths fun is by using a tool like Maths-Whizz at home. With its much-loved host of animated characters, it provides children with an interactive world of learning which they can do at their own pace, from the comfort of their own home.
Adapt to Their Learning Style
Every child learns differently and, if your child does well at English, they may benefit from reading maths storybooks. Maths storybooks help engage your child with the topic in a subtle and enjoyable way. Some of our favourites are The Greedy Triangle by Marilyn Burns, Fractions in Disguise by Edward Einhorn, and A Remainder of One by Elinor J. Pinczes.
If your child is very visual, then why not try some maths colouring sheets? Whether it’s colouring certain numbered squares different colours to reveal an image or making multiplication fun by solving sums to know what colour to use, maths colouring sheets are a handy way of subtly introducing creative children to the world of maths whilst making it fun.
It’s common for young children to mimic the behaviour of their parents. So, if maths is not your strong point, try not to verbalise your negative feelings. Instead, show a proactive attitude by asking for help and keep your enthusiasm up. It’s important for children to learn there is no shame in asking if they don’t understand. That’s how we can make maths worthwhile.
Disclosure: This is a featured post.