Simple, effective, and fun: 4 ways to keep your child’s maths momentum going

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Editor’s note: This is an updated version of a blog post published on July 31, 2017

Keeping children’s maths learning going over the summer holidays can feel like extra pressure for parents. Here are a few simple things that you can do to keep those warm days productive.

On average, learners lose about 2.6 months of maths learning over the summer months and teachers complain that they have to start many topics again due to this lost ground.

Encouraging children to keep their maths learning going over the summer doesn’t need to be a chore, it can be simple, effective, and fun.

1. Use maths apps to sharpen skills

Download educational games or applications for those long journeys! Whether you’re taking a road trip or flying across the world, downloading educational applications onto your child’s tablet or smartphone can really sharpen their arithmetic skills.

The Educational AppStore has a great selection of free apps for children.

2. Make everyday life about maths

Use everyday life to contribute to your child’s learning and play games using maths as you go about your daily routine. You will find all sorts of games that you can play together ways to keep your child’s maths learning going over the summer.

This one is really fun, super simple, and it requires no real planning!

A trip to the supermarket? Make it about maths. One loose banana costs 13p so how many bananas can I buy with £1.00? Ask your child to guess. The visual representation of the items will also aid their learning. When you get home, ask your child to count out £1.00 in smaller coins. How many 13p amounts fit into £1.00? What if I only wanted to buy 5 bananas? How much change would I receive from £1.00?

There are so many ways to get your child excited and learning at the same time. This sort of dialogue can be practiced anywhere, for example, while having ice creams on the beach, when buying cinema tickets, during strawberry picking.

3. Remind them of what they know

At the school where I work, we send our MNP workbooks home over the holidays for parents to see what their children have been doing. Once you have skimmed through and seen what has been covered, it is so much easier to work with them so that they don’t forget what they have learned.

Pick one or two questions daily (15–20 minutes) and ask your child to answer them with you, showing and explaining the multiple methods to work out a certain equation. Praise your child for doing so and don’t let them forget that success is something they need to work hard for (you win through struggle!). This will hopefully help keep them in gear for September.

4. Meet those targets before September

Naturally every child has targets to focus on for the following year, be it learning their multiplication tables or reading more challenging books. Focusing on them will help keep your child’s maths learning going over the summer.

If your child has struggled with number equations, get out that workbook and look online at the programme to see what you can do to help them go further. One-to-one time with a child is so precious and effective, even if you spend half an hour with your child completing one question together, you have made a difference!

is a contributor to the Blog.
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