How To Teach Math
How To Teach Math
Using visual and tactile methods to help children learn early on the basics of numbers, math operations, and place values.
Hi, I'm Donald Sinclair. I'm a science and math tutor with Greater London Tutors. Today, we're going to be looking at how to teach various topics.
When the child is starting out to learn the basics of mathematics, the most fundamental idea to start is the idea of numbers. One way that can help really imprint the idea of a number into a child's mind is a visual representation of that number, something like simple dots in a piece of paper can really help. Number cards like we use where the numbers between one and ten are represented by dots on the paper can really help bring in the idea early on of how the numbers are added together, the relationships between numbers, how the numbers are subtracted from each other and so on.
Here for example, if you were to ask what four plus seven is, it can be easily be seen that there's three spaces left in the seven card that can be filled up with three of the dots from the four card, leaving one over. I can show you that you will have one complete card which will have the value of ten and one left over. This could bring in the idea that four plus seven equals eleven early on.
By visualizing these dots it gives a tangible, concrete idea of a number in the head rather than just abstract notions on a piece of paper. Some children are more happy learning with their tactile kinesthetic approach. For this, you can use simple tokens or chips to represent numbers.
This can help them visualize the mathematical process is the very basic one that they're learning at the start and how they look in the real world. For example, if you wanted to teach five plus three simply have five tokens three tokens of another one, put them together and very simply add them up to see what the total is. As long as they're happy counting up to small numbers, this is a very good way to learn the basics very early on.
This can also help with the ideas of place values and the like. If for example you wanted to add five plus seven, you simply put them in a row. Here, I write out ten white chips so that you can see when we reach ten.
When ten is reached, the remainder go in the next line. This can give the idea then that seven plus five gives you one line of tens and two alter units they give twelve. When teaching the basics of mathematics, you may find that the child has a preference for learning either visually or kinesthetically or through some other process.
These are a couple of methods that you can tailor to the way that your child learns best.