Math is a subject that some people immediately fall in love with and others loathe until their final days. Still, no matter whether you love it or hate it, math is undeniably one of the most useful subjects of all.
From business journalists to physicists, there are thousands of professions out there that require math every day. That means improving your child’s math scores is about more than good grades, it’s about a good future.
With that in mind, today we are going to discuss three easy ways to improve your child’s math scores in 2020.
Bring Math To The Real World
The best math teachers in the world are able to not only explain difficult concepts to children but to bring those concepts to life with real-world, relevant examples. Matt Kitchen, a math teacher with decades of experience from Ohio says it best:
“I want my students to see that mathematics can help them better understand and describe the world around them. There is real-life application of almost every form of mathematics. I want my students to learn to write slope-intercept form equations, but even more, I want them to see that you can use that equation to make projections in business when you know your profit per customer and a monthly loss. Then students can say, ‘They probably shouldn’t open this business if they need 200 customers a day to break even.’”
It’s no secret that if you value something and believe it’s important you are more likely to put time and effort into it. If your child is struggling with math, it may be because they just aren’t seeing how this is relevant to their everyday lives.
But how do you bring math to the real world for your child?
One great way to bring math alive is to use it during everyday activities. Whether that means taking a break from cooking to do some simple math with your young one(½ cookie + ½ cookie= 1 cookie) or making it a point to use math when calculating the required nutrients and water for your indoor plants, there are a number of ways to bring math into your everyday life.
Sports, for example, are another great way to encourage your child to use math. While watching the game with your son or daughter you can do things like average each player’s contribution (scores, yards, hits, etc.) to the game, calculate the probability of each player’s chance of scoring or find the mean, median and mode of players’ weights or heights.
No matter how you do it, what’s important is bringing math into the fun aspects of your child’s life so they can learn to view the subject as an entertaining challenge to overcome rather than an unapproachable problem.
Beyond doing math with your child in everyday scenarios it’s also important to illustrate the value math brings to those who have mastered it. This is especially useful if your child is a little older. Show them the lifestyles and maybe even the average salaries of physicists or physicians and ask them if that’s something they may be interested in. Achievement and the rewards we receive from achievement are sometimes the best motivators of all.
All of this consistent math exposure is vital to improving your child’s math scores. Not only can it help to reduce the stress surrounding math and make it easier for your child to perform under pressure during exams, but it can transform the way your children see the world, making them lifelong learners.
Practice Makes Perfect
The reality is, just like anything in life, if you want to get good at math you need to practice. That may mean investing in an abacus if your child is young to get them to view math as a fun part of daily life—something to be played with and enjoyed, not just studied.
Or, if your child is older you may want to purchase any one of a number of great math games to get the consistency of practice required to be a great learner. Parents.com has an extensive list of educational math games for kids. These are affordable, easy to use options that can make a lot of difference in your child’s performance at school.
Still, direct, targeted practice is the most important factor when it comes to improving math scores, and the best way to do that is with an in-person math tutor. Of course, affording an in-person math tutor is easier said than done. If you’re not in the position to hire an in-person tutor, then you may want to try online math learning programs like Komodo that have accompanying tutors via skype. These services can be great substitutes for in-class learning at a fraction of the price.
All in all, what’s important is constant exposure to mathematical concepts and learning. Only that way can a student increase their comfort levels and attempt to attack more difficult mathematical concepts.
Try A New School
If all else fails, you may want to enroll your child in a charter school, like the Academies of Math & Science. AMS schools offer a specialized curriculum that is more STEM-focused. They also offer smaller class sizes, which leads to more one-on-one time with teachers.
Unfortunately, public schools in the U.S these days are overwhelmed by the sheer number of students requiring an education. This leads to worse results, especially for kids struggling to keep up with the class. If your child isn’t getting the attention they need to progress, then it’s time to make a change. Charter schools that specialize in math & science are a great option.
These schools also offer specialized school management technology, from companies like SchoolCues, that helps keep parents in touch with teachers, making for better student outcomes.
When all is said and done, your child’s success is what matters. That’s why math is so important. The world is changing, and now more than ever STEM skills are a requirement. Don’t let your son or daughter get left behind, do everything in your power to improve their math skills, before it’s too late.