If you have a teenager at home this article is for you!
Teach Teens The Importance Of Math Every Day
Math can be a challenging subject for students, but it is vital for their futures. Statistics show that strong math skills can increase success after high school, regardless of teens’ career goals or plans for higher education.
While most teens believe math is important for achieving their career goals, a national survey by Texas Instruments has found that only half are planning to take additional math classes beyond their schools’ minimum requirements.
So how do parents convince their children to do more than the minimum in math?
Show Them They Use Math Every Day…Really
Teens already are using math in daily life, although they may not know it. Here are just a few examples:
• Figuring out how many more minutes you can talk on your cell phone this month without going over your contract? Divide X number of minutes by Y number of days left in the month, and you get how many minutes per day can be used. Welcome to Algebra 101.
• Buying a car? You will have to adjust the length of the loan and interest rates to find the monthly payment that will fit your budget. And don’t forget to figure in gas, maintenance and insurance.
• Driving your car? Estimating distances, judging acceleration rates and calculating how late you can sleep and still reach your class on time all require math skills.
If teens recognize how math can improve their lives outside of the classroom, they just might be more likely to challenge themselves in the classroom.
Require Four Years Of Math
Taking at least one math class every year in high school can increase the number of opportunities for teens, whether their plans lead to college or directly into the workforce.
Just consider these statistics from the United States Department of Education:
• High school students who complete math classes beyond Algebra 2, such as trigonometry or precalculus, are more likely to go to college-and earn their degrees twice as fast-as those with a less rigorous math education.
• People with strong math backgrounds are more likely to be employed and earn more, even if they have not gone to college.
Math skills are essential to success, regardless of the teen’s goals.
Demonstrate How Math Can Be Rewarding And Fun
Math is all around us and an exciting part of everyday life. Scientists use it to find cures for diseases, musicians use it to compose songs and entrepreneurs use it to manage their businesses.
Providing teens with ways to relate math to their lives and future career plans will help them to understand its importance.
One program that mixes entertainment with education is Texas Instruments’ We All Use Math Every Day™, which provides free classroom activities online that help students explore the math derived from the concepts highlighted in each episode of CBS’ “Numb3rs.” Developed by mathematicians and educators, the activities focus on high school level math. Thousands of educators are downloading the classroom activities on a weekly basis and more than 35,000 have signed up for the Teacher Kits, inspiring more than 4 million students to become more engaged and interested in math.
By: Stacey Moore
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Visit www.cbs.com/numb3rs to learn how your teen can benefit from the program and encourage your child’s math teacher to check out the activities as well. It is important for parents to engage their children in math and teach them the value of a strong math education. By working with teens to show how math is relevant every day, parents can help ensure their children’s personal and professional success.