Let’s talk STEM (4): How to introduce Math in early childhood?
Question: How does a mathematician induce good behavior in his/her child?
Did you get it?
Answer: “I’ve told you n times, I’ve told you n+1 times…” ☺
Imagine, this was how last night looked – you poured yourself and the kids a generous glass of chocolate marshmallow smoothie. The aroma of Mac ‘n’ Cheese waltzed its way out through the kitchen.
The table was laid with a deck of playing cards, and the family ate a sumptuous dinner, laughed and even occasionally cheated over a game of rummy!
It’s now early morning…..Your kids need to wake up and get ready for school!
Yeahhh, we know! Now, isn’t that how math feels after that awesome read on Art?
Stop right there! ‘Cause we don’t want you, or your kids feeling that way!
Yes, it’s possible! And yes, of course, we’ll tell you how.
The M(ath) in STEM:
Here are 4 awesome ways to help your kids not just learn but continue to learn math.
1. Play a fun DIY Addition Game
- On a smooth and long surface (table, chart paper), write numbers at random. Preferably, numbers that are multiples of 10
- Ask your kid to draw shapes around these numbers to form a boundary (triangle, circle, rectangle)
- Uncap a few bottles and slide the caps one after the other on the numbers
- Make a note of the numbers the caps have landed on and ask your kid to total them. Ex. If the caps landed on 100, 300, outside the boundary of a number, 500 and 200, your score is 1100.It’s now your kid’s turn to play and beat your score!
2. We Don’t Need no Algebra!
Kids are under the impression that algebra is not a life lesson. Straighten their assumption now! And we mean NOW!!
– Take the farther route to get to their favorite ice cream stall!
The long wait to get their hands on a mouth-watering ice-cream will help kids understand concepts such as ‘shortest path’, distances, why and how they go a long way in time management, devising estimates and goal formulation.
Tip: To keep them from getting restless, have them count ice cream flavors
– Make up a fun math-filled bedtime story
Once upon a time, there was a baby panda named “Pi”, who lived with his father “r-square”. On a sunny day, Pi was eating bamboo shoots, when he suddenly started turning yellow! r-square rushed Pi to the “Area of a Triangle” hospital. “You don’t belong here. Leave!” the security at the hospital said.
Pi and r-square did not know which hospital they had to go to…..
That’s your cue!
Take it forward.
Tip: Psssst, you would want to ensure that Pi gets to “Area of a Circle” hospital because πr2 (Pi × r-square) is the formula for the area of a circle.
3. Hop, Skip and Jump to Multiples
- Cut a cardboard box or colorful papers into rectangles (bigger than your child’s feet) and number them as multiples of 2, 3 and 5
- Place them all over the floor of a room, not too far from each other
- When you say ‘2’, direct your kid to jump on numbers that are multiples of two.
Try the same with 3 and 5 or any other numbers!
Tip: Play peppy music and watch your kid throw in some dance moves during the activity!
4. Keep Calm and Math On!
Mathematics anxiety is a phenomenon where children feel anxious and tensed while solving even a simple real-world problem such as addition or subtraction.
Math doesn’t come easy to everyone…. Surprise! And if your kid is one among them – have patience.
Sit with your child through a difficult problem they’re attempting, but refrain from helping, soon as they make a mistake. Don’t let bad grades influence your attitude towards your child’s ability to improve. Assure them that math is doable, and the secret lies in three P’s: Practice – Patience – Perseverance
Say it out loud!
Chances are that we may have struggled with math or STEAM, in our childhood.
We’ll return the love by answering any questions you may have.
Power to STEAM!