Many parents focus on skills like reading when it comes time for their kids to start preschool or kindergarten, but math is an important subject to keep in mind, too. Recent studies have shown that a child’s math skills upon entering kindergarten can be a prominent indicator of their future academic performance. Math can be incorporated into so many parts of daily life, and many games even rely on math in order to be played properly or well. Help boost your child’s math skills with some of these simple, but fun math activities every day.
Count Everyday Objects
Counting simple things like how many apple slices your child has for snack time or how many forks and knives are at the dinner table can help kids get into the habit of not just counting but can help them have a better abstract idea of how numbers work, as well. Start with small numbers, generally no more than five, and add a few more as your child improves – they may be ready for a challenge!
Lined Up In a Row
Let’s experiment – take some coins and line them up together on a table. Have your child count how many coins there are. Now, spread out the coins but otherwise leave them be. Then, ask your child how many coins there are again. Don’t be surprised if they have to count again, but once your child begins to automatically know the answer, you’ll know they’ve mastered number invariance.
Fun and Games
There are plenty of family friendly children’s games that involve counting, such as Chutes and Ladders or Candy Land. These sorts of games are great for acquainting kids with numbers. Not only will they have to roll the die and need to recognize the number they get, but they will then need to count how many spaces they move as a result. For more advanced players, card games like War that involve addition can be helpful with simple math problems as well.
It is also important for kids to develop a basic understanding of geometry and special relations. Blocks and other such toys can help with this early on, but as they learn the names and appearances of shapes, you can also have them identify shapes around the house and anywhere else you go, too.
A Map of Home
Creating a map of your house can be helpful for a lot of reasons. Not only can it help your child practice spatial language and develop a deeper understanding of spatial relations, but it can also help when it comes to plotting a course for escape in the event of an emergency like a fire.
Having kids help out with dinner can help them learn to read and introduce them to new foods, but it can also help them learn all about measuring. While there are many forms of measurement, one of the easiest things you can do with kids is prepare dinner according to a cookbook. Have them help you measure out all of the spices and other ingredients so they can become familiar with numbers and measurements as well as with words and food.