How to Instill a Love for Math

 

“How to Instill a Love for Math”

By Donna Vail

 “Go down deep enough into anything and you will find mathematics.” –Dean Schlicter

Today, more than ever, it’s important that we raise our children to love math. Statistics report that 80% of the fastest growing job markets will require people to have strong math and science backgrounds. I believe it’s really necessary in all markets because when it comes down to it, everything is math. Especially now with the way we have infused technology into our everyday living and it’s continual advancement.

As our children grow up in this age of digital technology, it’s crucial for them to be strong in math to succeed in this kind of environment and the emerging world we have yet to see. To help them learn for a strong today and tomorrow here are 5 steps to take to increase the love for math.

  1. Look for ways to bring math into real life. When you pause and look at everything, it breaks down to math. Looking at symmetry in plants and flowers, seashells, cooking, building, playing games, books, toys, even in art through proportions and percentages. When you go shopping share with the children pricing, quantities and budgeting. Real life math can be easy and parts of the conversation as you live. Right now sitting at my desk looking at my office doors I see the windows are panes in a pattern of two by five and observing the measuring to build it as well as hang it is imperative for ease and function. As you observe your world and look at the details your children will learn to be observant, logical and math savvy.
  2. Consider your child’s learning style and comprehension of math. In the beginning it is best for young children to learn math through hands on concrete experiences. When you know your child’s learning style you can honor this as well. Does he learn best from reading or verbal instruction? A child who learns best from verbal instruction doesn’t necessarily need you to stand in front of him teaching but can read the lesson aloud to himself. Anytime you can make math concrete your children will more easily grasp the concepts. Young children just getting started can use blocks, beans, sticks…anything you find laying around can be used to demonstrate a math concept and then practiced with by the child. Older students can apply what they’ve learned in real life situations such as shopping or building things.
  3. Be interested and supportive yourself. Let your children see you using math in your everyday. Don’t complain but rather see where you can improve yourself just as you would want them to do. Be curious to figure things out and take the time to do so. Whatever you don’t want your children to do, don’t do it yourself. Be patient and positive with yourself as well as your children. Allow for mistakes and time to learn. Always look to share positives around math and forget the stories from your past that are “math nightmares.” No need to pass that on.
  4. Set your child up for success. The way you understand math and the way your child perceives it can be two different things. It’s best to leave math teaching up to the experts. Include the best quality math resources. In An Inspired Education we incorporate self-education so the children use the math text learning directly from the math expert. If I get in there and teach them it could become a debacle which is the last thing I want for my children and math. When they are self-educating math they are doing the work every day, sharpening their minds and moving forward in the lessons. Each of the children are working at their own pace, set up with their study books, texts and all the resources they need to be successful every day in math. When a day is missed or if a concept need more review they are never behind but always where they need to be. They never experience being left behind or miss any concepts which are imperative with math, because it builds upon each lesson. The multiplication and division done today will serve them in algebra later. This success in math will build them up in everything they do.
  5. Play games that use math. When you are busy having fun playing games with math you forget just how much you are learning. This can sometimes take away the edge for a child who is struggling with a specific concept. Here are just a few games you can make a part of everyday fun and learn along the way:

Addition, Subtraction, and Counting Skills- Chutes and Ladders, Candy Land, Connect Four, Hi Ho! Cherry-O, Sorry!, Trouble, and Uno

Patterns, Attributes, Shapes and Geometry- Crazy Eights, Guess Who?, Rummikub, Tanagrams, and Jigsaw Puzzles.

Strategy, Reasoning, and Spatial Perception- Mastermind, Monopoly, Apples to Apples, Yahtzee, Battleship, Clue, Connect Four, Othello, Jenga, Mancala, Memory

General Strategy Games- Chess, Backgammon, Checkers and Solitaire.

What can you do to encourage math in your home? Our children have a whole new frontier ahead of them. Rather than raw land to develop it will be technology, the management of resources and so much more that we are unable to conceptualize at this time. Set your children up for a lifetime of success through self-education, inspiration and entrepreneurship.

“Do not worry about your problems with mathematics; I assure you mine are far greater.” –Albert Einstein

 

Parents Inspired to Action:

  • Live a lifestyle of learning and make it a part of your every day. Seize the opportunities to learn from and talk about what’s learned. Look for math in everything you do and touch. You will be amazed and so will your children.
  • Let go of old thoughts about math. Build upon the positive thoughts and actions you want to instill in your children. Share only the positive stories or ones that will build them up in their learning. Remember last week’s e-newsletter? How teachable are you? How willing to change are you?
  • Get out the games and have fun in the afternoons and evenings as a family. Children love to play games and it builds great relationship bonds. It makes learning easy and fun.
Children Inspired to Action: 
  • Even children who dislike math can learn to appreciate it and like it. Be sure they are aware that the answers are always available to them and that they are genius, capable of the work. Encourage them with stories of the past self-educators and what they did with their math skills such as Thomas Edison, Albert Einstein, Alexander Graham Bell, George Washington and Benjamin Franklin.
  • Encourage your child to the answers rather than giving them the answers. As you practice this your children will be more inquisitive and inclined to seek out the answers themselves. It will take a transition time if you are bringing them home from school or moving from the traditional teaching methods.
  • Have your children take turns being in charge of family game night. Let them choose a snack to serve and which game you get to play and then do it.


    You might be wondering what kind of systems you can incorporate to get the results you’re looking for in your own homeschool and life. What are the daily details to make it happen? Trial and error can take a lot of time. Successful people always incorporate the help of mentors and coaches so they don’t have to re-invent the wheel. If you would like a more systematic approach that includes the details to help you produce real change fast, I recommend joining the Mentor Mastery Inner Circle. It keeps you inspired and you receive coaching directly from Donna in the most important things for setting up simple, effective systems giving your children an education in excellence while creating family harmony. It’s easy. It’s affordable. Get started today at www.donnavailinternational.com/inner-circle.html.

Think peace, live love.

 

 © copyright 2011 Donna Vail International

All rights reserved.

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Want to Use This Article In Your e-zine Web site, blog or newsletter? You have my permission, as long as you include this complete excerpt with the article: Inspired Education Mentor Donna Vail publishes the all inspiring ‘Living an Inspired Education’ e-newsletter. Every issue reveals tips, tools, and secrets to simply and confidently home school with inspiration! Start living a lifestyle of true freedom and inspire the best in your child.  Get your free weekly education and success mindset tips now at http://donnavailinternational.com.

Comments

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