I believe that children can learn basic math for free anywhere. Math is all around us, and children are born with the desire to learn. Not all of them have access to an AMC 8 online class, but it is important to support the child when and where they need it to continue to propel their math learning and passion.
Parents are often worried about the cost of store-bought resources, time for creating activities, and pressure of academics. I hope this post can give reassurance, and a 1-page printable summary can be found at the end of the post.
When my kids were younger, we didn’t have special manipulatives, and we’ve rarely used workbooks and apps. Currently, my 6-year-old daughter has been placed in 3rd grade math. Meanwhile, my 3-year-old has been learning to count and add.
Important facts about teaching math to kids
- Many parents and caregivers are capable of teaching their kids math basics.
- Concrete concepts should mastered before interpreting symbols (eg, numerals, equations).
- Every child learns at their own pace. My 2 children are perfect examples of hitting milestones often a year or more apart.
- Basic math can be taught anywhere: indoors / outdoors, home / school / play.
- A short spontaneous lesson can be highly effective.
- Children can learn how to count and do math in multiple languages simultaneously.
- Learning is often spiral rather than linear.
Although many of us grew up with workbooks and feel the pressure of progressing to the next page, reviewing the same concept can deepen our child’s knowledge.
Teach basic addition and subtraction for free
Math at mealtime
After counting is established, next comes addition and subtraction.
For example, when my kids ask for strawberries, we can count the number of pieces on their plate.
If they think it’s not enough and ask for more, this becomes an addition learning opportunity. As they eat, we can practice subtraction.
Baking is another natural way to teach math. With measuring cups, you can teach addition and subtraction by looking at volume measurements. They learn that precision can affect taste, and hopefully the result will be delicious!