Month: February 2011

Math Isn’t All Fun And Games

Or is it?

After reading this article, I’m inclined to think that it should definitely involve fun and games when a child is trying to learn math! That’s one of the reasons that we encourage the children we tutor at Mathnasium of Cherry Hill to play with the games that we keep on hand!

So check out this article from GoArticles.com and see if you agree with Bonnie Adama (the author) and me!

How To Help Your Child Learn Math Using Fun And Easy Games

It’s common knowledge that young children whose parents read to them have a tremendous advantage in school. But did you know that you can also help your child learn mathematics by doing and supporting math at home – with games?

As a National Board Certified Master Teacher, I’ve been teaching math with games to children for many years, and I see that children no longer memorize their addition facts or multiplication tables. With the math curriculum as extensive as it is, teachers cannot afford to take the time to ensure that students learn the basic facts. Parents are partners in the process, and you can offer greater opportunities for your child to succeed in math if you support the learning of the basics at home.

Many years ago I discovered that math games fit the bill wonderfully! Math games put children in exactly the right frame of mind for learning. Children are normally very eager to play games. They relax when they play, and they concentrate. They don’t mind repeating certain facts or procedures over and over. In an engaging math game, children will be more focused and retention will be greater.

Dittos or workbook pages are not appropriate if you want your child to be excited about math. Children throw themselves into playing games the way they never throw themselves into filling out workbook pages or dittos.
 
Games offer a pleasant way for you to get involved in your child’s math education. You may be one of those many parents who don’t feel comfortable with math, or who assume it takes special expertise to teach it. Believe me, as a veteran teacher, when I say that you don’t have to be a math genius to play a game. With a math game, you don’t have to worry about pushing or pressuring your child. All that you have to do is propose a game to your child and start to play.

Games can help your child learn almost everything they need to master in elementary math. Games solidify the achievements of children who are already good at math, and they shore up children who need shoring up.

Children crave time spent with their parents. Because learning is a social process, children learn best through fun games that involve interaction with other people. Seize this opportunity to indulge them with your own undivided attention. Try a math game with your child. A price cannot be put on the quality of the time you will have spent together. They will have fun while learning, and they will remember those times with greater fondness than the times they spent playing the educational computer game or doing a ditto or workbook page.

There are literally hundreds of fun and easy games you can play with your kids to help them learn math and actually enjoy it! Games specific to your child’s grade level are best.

Here’s an example of a great game for Second Graders called “Get Close to 100.”

Get Close to 100 is a great game for second graders. It helps children practice double-digit addition with special emphasis on understanding place value.

Get Close to 100

What you need:
– 2 – 4 players
– deck of cards, 10s removed
– Get “Close to 100? recording sheets (below) for each player

The object of the game is to make a two-digit addition problem that comes as close to 100 as possible.

Shuffle cards and place them face down in a pile.

Player #1 turns over 4 cards and moves the cards around until he/she has created a two-digit addition problem whose sum will be as close to 100 as he/she can make it. You can go over 100. Player #1 records this problem on his/her recording sheet. Player #2 checks for addition accuracy.

Example: Player #1 draws a 4, a 7, a 2, and a 5. He/she moves the cards around until she/he decides that:

47 + 52 = 99 is the closest that he/she can get.

Player # 2 draws four cards and does the same.

The points for each round are the difference between their sum and 100.

Example: A sum of 95 scores 5 points and so does a sum of 105.

Players compare scores at the end of this first round. They put their four cards in a discard pile and player #2 begins first and turns over four more cards for the second round.

After six rounds, players total their points and the player with the lowest score wins.

These games offer you and your child the opportunity to have fun together with math, think hard, and enjoy it. How often do you say that about doing math at home?

Give a math game a try! Find more math games and great tips to help your child at: www.MathGamesAndActivities.com

About the Author:

Bonnie Adama is a National Board Certified master teacher with many years of experience at Kindergarten, First, Second, and Third grades. The last 13 years of teaching, she co-taught a multi-age classroom of first, second, and third graders. She taught all the math and science, and her teaching partner taught all the language arts. For many years, Bonnie worked as a mathematics mentor within her school and district. She retired from the Fontana Unified School District in Fontana, California in 2005.

So are you ready? Ready to try some fun and games?  😉

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Lets Make A Pie!

I have to admit that I haven’t done much listening to podcasts. How about you?

So I went to look for some online podcasts concerning math. I figured it would be an audio file that I coud listen to. Imagine my surprise when I found a video podcast!

So I thought I’d share the podcast with you and let you maybe try listening and watching your first podcast!

So without further ado .. Here is your math podcast, all about pie and the concepts involving it.

http://www.learnoutloud.com/Podcast-Directory/Science/Mathematics/Is-All-About-Math-Video-Podcast/23106#listen

Please let me know what you think?

Have a great week!

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Quick Tips To Help Your Children With Math Homework

Here’s an article to help you learn how to help your children get their math homework done!
It comes coutesy of ArticleDirectory.com

Three Easy Ways To Help With Elementary Math by Clarence Bailey

Have your children ever brought home math homework and you have no idea how to assist them? Students no longer learn math the way you and I learned math. They are now exploring, drawing, and developing their own strategies to solve a problem. This leaves many parents in the dark about how to help their child in math. In addition, some people just are not “math people” and therefore feel like they don’t know how to help their child. I am going to give you three easy ways to help with elementary math from home.

Help with Elementary Math Tip #1- One of the easiest ways for a child to learn math concepts is to use manipulatives. Manipulatives are items that your child can move around, group, take away from, add to, etc. These can be anything you have in your house (beans, skittles, grapes, etc.).Manipulatives help children who are struggling in math because they help to bring the problem to life. Your child will now be able to “act out” the story problem, which helps them better understand what they are supposed to do in order to work out the problem or equation.

When children use manipulatives they show the word problem using the manipulatives. For instance, if a child was dividing 72 by 9, he or she would count out 72 beans and then group them into groups of 9. He or she would then count how many groups they have to find their answer. To extend this activity, students can label what they are doing so they can connect the manipulatives with drawings or numbers.

Help with Elementary Math Tip #2- If you don’t have manipulatives at home or if they are completing their work in the car, before baseball practice, or anywhere that manipulatives are not available your child can draw pictures. It might seem too simple to be true, but I have had many experiences where a child was stuck on a problem until they drew a picture and visually saw the problem instead of simply reading it. Drawing pictures of the word problem or equation helps a child see exactly what they are going to do in the problem. They are also able to manipulate the items they are working with, which makes it more fun and meaningful to them.

Drawings work a lot like manipulatives, but students are now strictly using paper and pencil and drawings instead of physically manipulating items. To make this activity more meaningful, your child should label their drawing with numbers, skip counting, or however they are counting the objects in their picture. I always tell my students that anyone should be able to fully understand what they are doing just by looking at their work.

Help with Elementary Math Tip #3- When your child is stuck on a problem try making the numbers smaller. In many cases, children are overwhelmed with big numbers. They see large numbers and automatically think the problem is going to be difficult. Making the numbers smaller doesn’t change the concept, it just makes it easier for them to work through the problem and it gives them confidence that they can complete the problem. Once they can successfully answer the problem with smaller numbers have them try using the bigger numbers. Just remind them to do the same thing with the bigger numbers that they did with the smaller numbers.

Math is a difficult subject for many children. A lot of times they come home and you just don’t know how to help them. Some of the best ways you can help your child succeed in math is to let them use manipulatives, have them draw pictures, and to change the numbers in the problem. They can use one or all of these strategies on the same problem. Utilizing these three easy tips with your child will help with elementary math skills and get them started on the path towards excellence in math.

Do you think these will help you? Drop a comment below and let me know what you think?

Have a great day!

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