Websites to Explore:
Funbrain – Visit the math arcade and test your skills at a variety of math tasks. (www.funbrain.com)
Set Game Daily Puzzle – A new puzzle each day based on the game, SET. (www.setgame.com)
A Plus Math – games, printables and more (www.aplusmath.com)
Multiplication (and other math) Games: ( www.multiplication.com ( and (http://www.mathplayground.com)
Bedtime Math – A daily math problem with 3 different difficulty levels (www.bedtimemath.com)
Math Mysteries – Solve a variety of math related mysteries (http://teacher.scholastic.com/maven/)
Count from any number, to any number, by any number. Count forward and backward. This will strengthen children’s addition skills and make learning the times table a breeze! And skip-counting (4, 8, 12, 16, and so on) is the best precursor to memorizing multiplication tables.
A growing awareness of patterns is a critical building block in mathematical reasoning. Seek out patterns and ask your child to create a pattern. Ask questions, too, such as: Do you see a pattern? What would happen to the pattern if I changed ____?
Make a pattern and ask your child to extend it. Make it fair by showing the repeating part at least three times. For example, 3, 6, 5, 10, 9, 18, 17, … . Or, ask your child to predict what number will be in the 8th place in a pattern such as 1, 4, 7, 10, … . Or look for patterns in nature: trees, scales of a pineapple, scales of a fish, honeycombs, symmetry in animals and plants.
Ask questions like:
I’m 39 years old and you are 5. How old will I be when you are 10?
How can you share 6 candy bars evenly with 3 children?
If 3 pieces of candy cost 50 cents, how much do 6 pieces cost?
Ask questions like:
Half of what number is 4?
How much is 2 ½ plus 2 ½?
How much is a half plus a quarter?
If our pizzeria cuts our pizza into 8 slices, what fractional part is each slice? If I eat 1 slice, what fractional part have I eaten? What if I eat 2 slices? 3 slices? 4 slices?
Children should be able to see a whole as being a collection of parts.
First, children should know the names and values of coins, followed by learning the basic equivalents (i.e., 20 nickels = 10 dimes = 4 quarters = 2 half-dollars = 1 dollar). Counting coins in piggy banks and making change at stores are some ways to develop these skills. Money is the best model of our base 10 number system. Pose questions such as “If I spend $2.45 for a Starbuck’s cup of coffee and I hand the cashier $10.00, how much change will I get back?”
The more you practice with your child, the easier 4 th , 5 th , 6 th …grade math will be. Remind them of the “tricks.” For instance, multiplying by 10 is easy because you just add a zero to the number you started with. And multiplying by 9’s, although not as easy as the 10s, 1s and 2s, is easier if you remember that the digits of the answer must add up to 9. For example, 2 x 9 = 18. One plus eight equals nine. Or, 5 x 9 = 45. Four plus five equals 9. There’s also a fingers trick for 9s that you can find online: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVbcra3rCqc
While Driving, get your child to think about place value, or the value of a digit based on where it is in a number. Have your child write down the numbers he or she sees on a car’s license plate. Have your child rearrange the numbers to make the largest possible number. For instance, 418897 could be rearranged to make 988741. Then have your child read the numbers aloud (“nine hundred eighty-eight thousand, seven hundred forty-one”). Rearrange again to the make the smallest number.
Get children involved in cooking or baking activities by letting them measure out ingredients. What better way to teach ratios, proportions, measurement conversion and time! You can even have them rewrite the recipe by doubling it or cutting it in half.
Go shopping together. Give children some money and let them manage it. Or, you could have your child estimate produce prices by saying, “This broccoli is $1.80 per pound and I want to buy 2 pounds. About how much money would that be?”
Involve children in home decorating. For example, to determine how much carpet you’ll need for your living room, use this simple formula: Area = Length x Width to determine the area of a rectangle or square. In a typical floor plan, all floor space is made up of squares or rectangles, so this formula will work.
Bottom Line: Incorporate math into your child’s activities 10-15 minutes a day. Make it fun! It will help your child tremendously.
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