How to Boost Your Child’s Confidence in Maths

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By Curtis Dziamka-Waters, School Success Advisor at Discovery Education

There’s no denying that maths is an important life skill.

Numbers are all around us, and engaging children in maths at a young age helps build key skills they can use in the classroom and beyond.

So, what can parents do to nurture curiosity in maths and encourage a love of numbers from a young age?

Here are four fun ways to boost your child’s confidence and ability in maths!

1. Practise Maths At Home

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There’s lots of evidence that parental involvement helps children to get ahead in maths. And practising little and often is important, too.

Kids love learning on iPads and tablets, and apps like Discovery Education’s award-winning DoodleMaths are ideal for short bursts of maths practice. Filled with thousands of fun exercises, DoodleMaths uses adaptive technology to give every child a unique work programme, boosting their confidence and ability in the subject.

Between the 1st – 30th of April, DoodleLearning is hosting its annual Spring Challenge, an exciting event where children can earn pin badges and certificates by using DoodleMaths every day. The Challenge is designed to promote healthy learning habits, top up children’s knowledge, and keep them motivated and curious. Plus, joining the fun is a great half-term activity!

To help kids take part in the Challenge, Discovery Education is giving parents a free 2-week trial of DoodleMaths from 18th March to 30th April 2024. Parents can sign up at: doodlelearning.com/challenge-promotion using the code: 2_WKS_SPRING.

As a bonus, this offer also includes a free 2-week trial of DoodleEnglish, an app for ages 5-11 that encourages the exploration of spelling, punctuation and grammar!

Research shows that children who use DoodleMaths can double their rate of progression (*Earning 18 stars a day in DoodleMaths is proven to double a child’s rate of progression – read the full study by visiting doodlelearning.com/impact).

So, by taking part in the Spring Challenge, you can supercharge your child’s confidence in maths and help them to believe, “I can do this!”.

2. Connect Maths to Real Life

Helping children understand how maths relates to everyday situations can make it feel more accessible, and there are lots of fun ways to help children connect maths to the real world.

The charity National Numeracy has some great free resources which explore numbers in everyday settings while shopping, eating or out and about.

Cooking can be a great way to build maths confidence. From measuring ingredients and setting the timer to working out how to share equal portions, mealtimes create lots of opportunities to get hands-on with numbers.

Why not kick-start your child’s learning with a trip to the supermarket? You can count up the items in your basket and even try to guess the total bill.

3. Develop Maths Through Play

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One of the best ways to build children’s confidence in maths is to connect it to play. And there are lots of games that you can play together which will help you to have fun with numbers.

Snakes and Ladders is a great way to introduce or reinforce addition and subtraction. Or if you don’t have the traditional board game to hand, you can easily create your own. Why not turn it into a fun craft activity using a free online printable and some colouring pens?

Sudoku is another great game for children, helping them to identify and recognise numbers and develop problem-solving skills.

And for younger children, water play is a fantastic way to develop maths confidence and teach them about physics, too! From sorting, counting and comparing floating objects to investigating volume, bath time is a great way to make maths learning fun!

4. Take Maths Outdoors

With spring underway, now is the perfect time to start thinking about outdoor family fun. But what if the great outdoors could also be a gateway to maths learning?

Geometry is all around us and nature walks are the ideal setting for studying shapes and patterns. Why not see if your children can find examples of different shapes in their outdoor surroundings? You can also investigate symmetry by looking at spider webs and angles by studying tree branches.

Encourage your children to use phones or tablets to photograph their findings. Then, help them create a digital scrapbook, where they can record their nature walk discoveries.

Children practise maths every day without even realising it. By helping your child to enjoy maths with these four activities, you’ll see their confidence and ability with numbers soar!

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