Research suggests that eight out of 12 kids dread mathematics. Ever wondered why?
Did you ever feel stressed out or anxious when your math teacher asked you a word problem with 64 watermelons? If yes, then trust me you are not alone. Nervousness or math anxiety is a sensible reaction to a complex situation.
Believe it or not, there are researchers who study why this happens and how it can be helped.
Earlier, it was believed that math anxiety arose when ore kids started learning complicated functions such as algebra. However, a recent study has hinted that kids as young as 6 also feel anxiety.
So how can we as teachers and homeschoolers build a stronger foundation? Let me suggest some tips and tricks for this process known as mathematization.
1. Shape Size Space – as your kids will grow up, their spatial sense will be called “Geometry”.
Finding patterns would greatly help the kids to make predictions, connections, and giving a reason to their logic. Hence, Shape, size, space should be repeated in a logical way.
2. Round it off! – one of the most commonly observed problems. Why rounding off is so difficult? Estimation can be made easier by helping them imagine words like more than, less than.
3. Problem-solving role play – Kids LOVE to play, hence, sticking with a problem and trying various angles (not just acute or obtuse) can lead to powerful and practical learning. Kids love to explore patterns and shapes, compare and classify, enumerate and investigate properties and shapes of everyday objects that surround them. The range of mathematics in role-playing helps in problem-solving and is fairly the development is fairly impressive.
Hands-On Anxiety Gone
For our tinker-toddlers, primer math can be difficult at first because the kids are not in the habit of visualizing abstract concepts. So how would you help them visualize or imagine a case where one quantity is either added or subtracted to/from another? The answer is simple – MANIPULATIVES!
In the class, I encourage my students to find shapely objects in order to demonstrate number building, patterns, 3D shapes, and much more.
Keep calm and reinforce!
“This part is correct”, “You are on target here”, “Yay! You’ve got this”.
I can confidently say that when statements like these are spoken to the young ones, any correct procedure can be smoothly reinforced. Be sure to make your praises random yet selective and most importantly disengage after they have learned the process.
We can do this math!