What Math Skills Should Parents Count On Their Children Having Before Kindergarten?
Learning to count isn't always easy! Parents can do a lot to help young children learn math concepts at home, before they enter kindergarten.
As young children learn their 1-2-3’s, they need to be aware of the items they’ve already counted and not leave any numbers out. Math teachers call that one-to-one correspondence, which means kids should only count an object in a set once, with one touch per object. If they have five cookies in front of them, one number should be assigned to each cookie. It’s a lot for a young child to keep track of, so working with numbers at home can make a big difference when learning at school.
Get Your First Month FREE!
Children also need to develop number sense when learning to count, such as understanding that a number stands for…a number of things! They can start by looking at a row of cars, a bunch of building blocks, or a pile of crayons, and eventually understand that number 6 is less than 9.
Luckily, learning can happen anywhere, and there are always things around that can be used as teaching tools for counting. Spending time counting fingers and toes every night with your child helps familiarize him or her with the sequence in which the words for 1 to 10 are said.
As your child grows and develops, there are more real-world activities that can help prepare him or her for kindergarten and also teach counting and math skills. Here are some fun ways to go about teaching mathematics:
- Setting the table allows kids to collect a number of items (like four spoons) and then lay them on the table and count as they go.
- Talk to your child about how many items there are in his or her collection of trucks, bracelets, stuffed animals, etc. Take an inventory and count them out! Use words like most, more, fewer, and fewest, to compare the groups.
- When grocery shopping, children can help with activities like getting five bananas or six cans of soup or counting how many people are in the checkout line.
- Play games with your child! Many involve counting–whether counting aloud as a game piece moves around the board, keeping score during a game, or in some other way.
- There are also many toys that teach numbers and shapes while actively engaging children as they play.
ABCmouse helps young children develop math skills by making learning fun, interactive, and exciting. Lessons follow a Step-by-Step Learning Path that builds as they go along. Improving math skills takes practice! At home or in the classroom, games, repetition, and engaging activities help students learn number recognition, beginning math concepts, and counting. When math is fun, children can develop confidence in their math abilities.