A Simple Equation to Help Kids Love Math
We're going to the equivalent of flipping to the back of the book to look right at the answers because we know back by listening to this math, you had to overcome some anxieties I bet of your. Yes. So let's get right to our takeaways and number one. Don't let your math anxiety hold your kids back. Nothing's -iety. As you mentioned is a real phenomenon all over the world and it's pretty clearly related to how we teach math in school things like timed practice and memorization and high stakes testing and oh my gosh, I'm getting. Hot Flashes and sweaty palms, just thinking about tests. Can here's the really upsetting thing that math anxiety it's not equal opportunity. That's right. It's tied to stereotypes race, and especially gender research shows that mothers and Preschool teachers who are overwhelmingly women they can pass that feeling onto their kids especially to their girls but there is some good news children are not born with math anxiety. All right. It's passed onto them. So I think that's why we have to check out selves in when we're talking about math this. was kind of a surprise for me because I thought that you know if my kid had a problem with math I could bond with him by saying, Hey, you know it was tough for me too but actually rose Marie says saying, I. Don't like Math I can't do math that will get conveyed to your children and the solution. Instead we need to reframe math yet rosemary says think about the fun activities that can back up and reinforce what they're learning. In school math is very much an integral part of your life do you love music i? Do I love to sing. All right. If you love music, then you love math do like to cook and Bake I love to cook and be okay. Then you love math because she can't do music and you can't cook and bake without math so I can't cook or bake really and I definitely cannot sing but I love baseball for example, and my boys. And I we talk about baseball statistics all the time. So what's important Rosemary says is recognizing math as part of many things that we like doing together exactly and so to see more about how adults can we've math into our everyday moments of life even with really little kids you and I and our producer Laurent Mickey visited Really Special Preschool new first reported this episode. This is back in two thousand and nineteen when we could freely move throughout the world. Watch US light today. This is the center for Early Childhood Education. It's our research preschool at Eastern Connecticut State University. The lobby has this giant, super, realistic oaktree yet which I climbed inside. Very cool. We should also say about a third of the kids at this school speak Spanish at home. That's right and at the preschool, we sat down with one of the lead researchers. Suda. Swami not done and she helped us understand a lot more about how to grow children who love math the minute we say math with think of the big picture you know Bagel theorems beore geometry concepts instead swimming not says thinks small she's a professor in Early Childhood Education at Eastern Connecticut State and her special focus is on early math learning and Sudha And her colleagues have done lots of research to see what kinds of childhood experiences lead to better performance in math later on and one of their answers makes up our second takeaway take number to talk about math take this really ordinary moment you asked them to put their books away and and say, doesn't fit the shelf. So why disadvantage fit? Maybe it's the book is too tall too big Suda says you're actually talking about math process it's problem solving. Yeah, and we heard lots of this by the way math talk at the preschool. As the duck fit in there too. He did fit when he was standing up. So you decided to lay down does he fit now? That's Amy Lopez the lead teacher for the toddler. It's a sunny room with a cozy reading corner. There's a play kitchen and blocks, and you're the center of the room. There's this table and amy sitting with the children they're building together with magnetized calls, which are these colorful plastic blocks with different shapes that stick together and the little plastic farm animals, and one of the kids is kind of putting together a house. You're using triangles and squares unique. Naming the shapes in both English and in Spanish. When we played this tape for Rosemary she said what I heard. There is the teacher using descriptive math language and that is so key for children to understand math concepts. You can't understand the concepts without the language. Yeah, and aim is not building the box for the kids cheese actually making observations kind of narrating their thoughts in real time the more blocks you on the longer dad's Cohen I notice that when you added more your line got longer and longer when she said Moore blocks to make it longer. Longer is a complex word for children and they need to hear that language and they need to hear that language in a very concrete way. She wasn't even afraid to use really technical words like when this little boy was trying to make a little corral standup. Now you can put them all around the perimeter all around the edge Caribbean or.