You are the math teacher

You are the math teacher

Parenting Matters

Cynthia Martin

Math is becoming more of a focus for educators of children from preschool to grade 2. What you do at home is your child's introduction to math.

Ask her fun questions like:

"How many hands tall is the sunflower?"

"How many potatoes will fill the pot?"

"Which grocery bag is heavier?"

"How many more red Skittles are there than yellow?" and "Which will take longer to eat, an apple or a chip?"

It may not seem like math but weight, volume, time and length are all a part of learning math lessons.

You are teaching your child math when she tells you how old she is, he calls his friend on the phone, she cooks popcorn in the microwave, he saves his allowance for a special book or game, she measures the ingredients to help bake a cake, he notices the many different shapes of the moon, she plays a game of cards or checkers, or he counts out the pieces for each game player.

Make sure you talk with your daughter about how good she is at math. Certainly you need to do this both for boys as well as girls. But far too many girls don't think they are good at math. Once she feels she is good at it, she will work harder to learn more and will have confidence in her math ability.

Being her first math teacher, you can make a big difference in her belief in herself.

Cynthia Martin is the founder of the First Teacher program and now director of Parenting Matters Foundation. The foundation publishes newsletters for parents, caregivers and grandparents. Reach Martin at or at 681-2250.

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