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How to Encourage Your Child to Love Learning

So your child has grown older, and you’re ready to give them a head start in getting ready with math. Well, that’s great! This article will give you some tips and ideas on how to best instruct your child while not making them fall asleep.

  • Part 1 of 4: Offering encouragement

(1) Encourage your child. What do you think would make for a more enriching class-time experience, an excited and ambitious one or a defiant, uninspired one?

(2) Keep teaching the child at a consistent pace. Sit down with them daily or at least biweekly to fuse the concepts into their minds. Never forget to keep it fun!

(3) Begin teaching your child with an interactive activity. There’s so much of options. you can use flashcards or a simple sheet of problems. Give them a handful of small objects and let them use those to count out the answers to the problems. Make sure you also have them learn to use their fingers in case no objects are available.

  • Part 2 of 4: Teaching concepts

(1) Teach concepts, not just memorization. While memorization can certainly be helpful, it’s even more helpful to have the child learn exactly how mathematical functions work. This way, they can also begin to apply their knowledge in other ways. That will help them when they begin to move on to more complicated math.

  • Make multiple activities that show how the concept works.

(2) Always make sure that your child completely understands a concept before moving on. If you skimp out on anything, it will be confusing for them and they will not be able to work as well as they should be able to when you apply it in other ways.

  • Part 3 of 4: Making math real

(1) Enhance the learning experience by playing games with the things around you. For example, ask them to say how many more pictures on the wall there is in the living room than the dining room. Have them count them both, then subtract.

(2) Continue to incorporate the concepts you’ve taught into fun things in real life. For example, measuring fractions when baking cookies, asking how many cats are at the pet store or how many showings of their new favorite movie are playing that day.

  • Bring up problems when you’re out with your child. In the grocery store, for example, ask them how much money out of $10 you’d have left if you bought green beans for $1. This will also help make the connections in their mind to help them to become better at math.

(3) Play board games. Board games with two dice rolled instead of one can be a good application for learning basic addition. When they get older, games that use play money, like Monopoly, can help them learn more about adding and subtracting money.

  • Part 4 of 4: Keeping it up

(1) Reward your child. At the end of your time sitting down to work with them, reward them somehow. Whether you give them a small piece of candy or you just hug them and express how smart they are, it will give them confidence and help them strive to do better.

(2) Don’t quit! Teaching your child math isn’t something that happens overnight. Skills need to stack up in their minds like building blocks, and while schools are a primary educator in your child’s life, you are one of the most important!

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Study Habits and Homework

HWMany of the issues concerning success in school revolve around developing good study habits and expectations regarding homework. Parents can certainly play a major role in providing the encouragement, environment, and materials necessary for successful studying to take place.

Some general things adults can do, include:

  • Establish a routine for meals, bedtime and study/homework
  • Provide books, supplies, and a special place for studying
  • Encourage the child to “ready” himself for studying (refocus attention and relax)
  • Offer to study with the child periodically (call out spelling words or do flash cards)

An established study routine is very important, especially for younger school age children. If a child knows, for example, that he is expected to do homework immediately after supper prior to watching television, he will be better able to adjust and ready himself than if he is allowed to do homework any time he pleases.

Connected to the idea of a study routine is the concept of a homework chart. This type of visual system tends to work very well, especially with children ages 9-12. The chart might look something like this:

Day Reading Math Science Spelling
Monday        
Tuesday        
Wednesday        
Thursday        
Friday        
Saturday        
Sunday        

All children need their own place at home to do homework. The space does not need to be big or fancy, but it needs to be personal so that they feel it is their “study place.”

Remember, learning styles differ from child to child, so the study place should allow for these differences. Parents can take a walk through the house with their child to find that special corner that is just right.