To help your elementary-aged child practice mathematical concepts at an early age, start early with reinforcing math activities. Math can be intimidating and boring for kids, especially elementary-aged kids who are just learning the basic concepts behind numbers and math. There are some easy elementary math activities that will help get your kids excited about math! Here are a few to try at your house!
Use numerals to match number words. Make a matching game with flash cards. Elementary kids can match the card with the number “three” to the card with the number “3”. You can also use number flashcards to learn number recognition.
Use different types of objects to count. Show your child the number and then have him or her count the number of items for you.
Reverse the above activity. Hand your child the objects and have them count the objects. Then pick out the correct number to correspond.
Have your child place numerals in number order from 0 to 10.
Use a deck of playing cards. Hand your child a playing card and have them count the number of objects on that card.
Lay out number cards. Ask your child to pick out a number and tell you.
While driving across town or to school, identify numbers you see along the roads. Use every opportunity to have your child tell you what number he or she sees on street signs, gas station kiosks, or speed limit signs.
Use your trips to the grocery store as learning opportunities. Have your child identify numbers in the store.
Have your child count out different objects that you purchase at the store. For instance, you could have your child pick out 3 onions or bananas.
You can post numbers around your house and give your child directions to find a certain number. For example, you could say “Go to your room and tell me the number that is on your desk”. Or you can have a treasure hunt. Your child must go and find you a given number you have posted in the house.
Put magnetic numbers on your refrigerator and call out a number for your child to show you. For example, ask “How old are you?”, or “How many fingers do you have?”
Have your child form numbers with play dough.
You can also use flash cards to teach addition and subtraction. On one side of a flash card, write 13, 7, and 6. See how many equations you can come up with and put them on the reverse side of the card, such as 13-7=6.
If math is intimidating for your elementary-aged child, there are ways to make it not as scary and more fun for your child. After it rains, use sidewalk chalk to draw around a puddle. Check every hour to see how much the puddle has changed. Your child will be able to see how puddles disappear more quickly in sun than in shade. Also, you can stand in the sun and trace your feet. Make a line at the end of your shadow and what time it is. Mark the line every half hour and talk to your child about the changes that occur.
With a few practice sessions and activites, your elementary-aged child will be a math whiz!