For parents, the subject of math is just as stressful as it is for children. Parents might think back to years of timed tests or embarrassing mistakes they made in class. This frustration and anxiety can make it difficult to coach children. But this fear and frustration should be removed when it comes to showing children how to do math homework. Parents are at a great advantage too. Math, numbers in general, is used in the house on a daily basis and all of these uses of numbers can provide for great teaching moments.
Below are some tips for covering all of your bases:
- If you are nervous about math, avoid passing these feelings on to your child by sharing on helpful information and leaving the harmful stuff in your head.
- If you feel you cannot do this, then try to hire a tutor, get an older sibling, or a peer to help with math homework. Your child’s school might have tutoring programs available.
- Start every homework session by asking the children to explain what they are doing for their homework. By doing this, you can find out each day whether they are able to do their homework alone or if they will need help.
- If you will not be around when your children do their math homework, make sure to tell them that you will look it over as soon as you get home. But be sure to follow through. Do not tell them you will help if you won’t.
- Encourage your child to ask a friend in class if they missed an assignment or don’t really understand a topic. You may have learned the topic differently when you were in school, and having it explained by someone who is learning it the same will keep your child from getting confused.
Try and explore math in every aspect of life. Try teaching your younger child how to tell the time that his favorite television show is on, or how to understand fractions while baking cookies. You can count the number of forks and knives that go on the table. Soon, kids will realize that math is everywhere. As this realization sets in, math homework will not seem so challenging and they will be able to relax. Remember to let them set up a special space for math homework that has all of the tools they will need. This should be the same space they use each time they do their homework.