Maths is a language and the more you can equip your child with its vocabulary, the easier formal schooling might be. Maths is all around us so it is easy with young children to introduce counting, measuring, volume, weight and so on just in your everyday activities.
Like the adage, Give a man a fish and he will have food for a day; teach a man to fish and he can eat for a lifetime, look for the teachable moments to introduce mathematical concepts.
Some simple ideas to introduce Maths
- Have a measuring place in your home – it might be a designated door frame where your child’s growth is recorded regularly. You can talk about the two types of measurements: metric (metres and centimetres) and imperial (feet and inches)
- Invite your child to help you make simple recipes, for example Pikelets and write out his own recipe with visual ingredients eg 1 (photo of egg) Get them to help you weigh the flour and measure the milk and pour them into the bowl; and they get to lick the spoon at the end!
- Have a money box for your child and encourage him/her to put in a coin when you can and then occasionally, empty it and let the child sort the coins and then help you add up.
- Fingers and toes are great for counting. Try to introduce the concept of adding on eg. 4+2 hold up four fingers and show them adding one finger and then the next. If you have a small group of children put a number of small treats on the table and get them to put them into equal groups to match the number of children.
- Learn and then sing counting songs.
- Let them help you unpack the groceries and talk about some items are bigger than others and look for the biggest/smallest item.
Remember that children often learn through play and interacting so make a game up and you both will have fun.
The educators at Angel’s Paradise Early Education Centre have a comprehensive Maths program implemented.