Five Ways to Tell if Your Child needs more support in math

Five Ways to Tell if Your Child needs more support in math

Understanding the early signs of needing extra assistance in mathematics is crucial for parents. Early intervention can significantly improve a child’s experience and success in this vital subject. Here are five key signs to look out for:

  1. Difficulty with Basic Math Concepts: Concepts like addition, subtraction, multiplication, or division are building blocks for more advanced math. Without a solid grasp of them, children may find it challenging to progress.

When your kids struggle with a math topic, always ask yourself whether it is the step-up they find difficult or whether they haven’t established the fundamental skills first.

  1. Avoidance of Math-Related Tasks: Children who find math difficult may avoid homework or activities involving math. This avoidance can manifest as procrastination, a sudden lack of interest, or even distress when it’s time to do math-related tasks.

Look for patterns such as your kids not being so willing to do homework on a certain day of the week, which may correspond with when their teacher sets math homework

  1. Low Confidence and Negative Self-Talk: Pay attention to how your child talks about their math abilities. Phrases like “I’m just not good at math” or “I’ll never understand this” are indicators of low confidence, which can stem from a perception of struggling with the subject.

Many adults set a poor example in this way, and this can cause confusion about whether kids think this is a normal thing to say or whether they are genuinely struggling.

  1. Trouble Applying Math to Real-Life Situations: Applying math skills to everyday situations is a sign of understanding. If your child can’t use basic math to solve problems like calculating change or measuring ingredients, they might be having a hard time with the subject.

In real life, we rarely get to concentrate on a task in isolation. Just because kids can work out change from a dollar in a written test doesn’t mean they’ll have the secure knowledge required to do the same under pressure in a social situation.

  1. Poor Performance on Tests and Quizzes: While one bad grade doesn’t necessarily mean your child is struggling, consistently low scores can be a sign of difficulty in understanding math concepts.

Choose educational apps with parent feedback features to help you spot any changes in your kids’ progress. Look for math apps with parental feedback features.

If you notice these signs, it’s important to offer support. Don’t label your child as poor or struggling at math, even when talking with their teacher, as they’ll always think within the label’s limitations.

Focus on kids’ persistence and success. Math is a varied subject, and it is not unusual for kids to understand some areas more easily than others. Use their successes to help them believe they can expand them into further topics.

To understand how to help your child improve in math using apps, see our Guide to Buying Math Learning Apps for Kids.

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