“Parents are a child’s first and most enduring educators, and their influence cannot be overestimated.”
Review of Mathematics teaching in Early Years Settings and Primary Schools, Sir Peter Williams 2008
Learning in numeracy takes place all around us, not just in the classroom! Here are just some ideas how parents and families can help support and develop numeracy skills:
- Cooking or baking: How will we measure how much? Can you read the numbers? Can you help me count the spoons? How many cupcake cases will we need? How long will it take to cook? What time will it be ready? What it we double or halve the recipe? How many will we make? How many cakes will we get each in our family? How many chocolate buttons will we need if we put three on each cake?
- Shopping: How many will we need? How much? Will we have enough from this amount? What shape is this? Which is more or less? Which is bigger? How do we work out 20% off? What will it cost if we buy ten? Which is better value?
- Watching or playing sports – what’s the score now? What if they get two more goals? How much is the black worth? What is treble twenty? How much better have they done than last week? What do these statistics mean? How long is the game? What time will it be at half-time?
- Recycling – how will we sort these? How many? What shape is this? Which is the longest? Can you find me a cylinder?
- Walking or driving to school – How long does it take? How many steps? How many number fours can you spot on the way? What number patterns can we spot? Are these numbers odd or even? What shapes can you spot? What directions are we taking? What would be the time difference if we walked or cycled?
Some great advice from Jo Boaler:
Follow this link to I Am a Mathematician for lots of great ideas and resources for learning with your child at home.
There are LOTS more ideas on these links:
This video from NZ maths may also be useful in showing ways we can develop and extend numeracy skills through everyday experiences:
Useful apps for use with iPads:
Follow this link for Education Scotland’s newly published numeracy and mathematics glossary on Parentzone.
But probably the most important thing to remember:
“Perhaps the single most important thing that parents can do to help their children with maths is to pass on a positive attitude.”