Parents today have busy schedules, but it’s not hard to find fun ways to support your 1st grader with math activities at home.
First, take a look at what your 1st grader is doing in math. You’ll see that 1st grade math worksheets show students at this level learning different ways to compose numbers. For example, 5 can be made with 4 and 1, and 3 and 2.
Further, 1st-grade students know that 7 apples and 7 oranges are equivalent or the same quantity, and they are learning that zero means “nothing.” Students at this age are ready to explore more advanced number concepts.
Parents play a vital role in developing their child’s number sense at any age. So let’s look at some ways to work fun math into everyday activities.
Practice number operations
Make up a relevant number story. It might go something like this:
I have 4 plates, but 7 people will be having dinner tonight. How many more do I need?
Play War with a deck of cards. This is a great way to practice identifying numbers that are greater than or less than.
Add and subtract with snack food by placing 10 grapes on the child’s plate. Ask how many the child has eaten. How many are left? Add some more grapes to the plate. Now, how many are there?
Ask your child to estimate the number of peas on their plate.
Count and Measure
At the store, count how many apples weigh 2 pounds. How many apples do you think are needed to make 3 pounds?
Allow your child to measure ingredients in a favorite recipe.
Measure using non-standard units of measurement. How many paper clips long is the pencil? How many hands high is the chair?
Have and use a calendar to count how many days until a special event or holiday.
Games like Chutes and Ladders or Hi-Ho Cheerio require counting.
Dominoes are great for counting and matching quantities.
Dice games are plentiful and reinforce counting and adding strategies.
Newspapers, Charts, and Schedules
Look for magazines and newspapers with weather charts and percentages.
Schedules for movies, sports events, and the school calendar are great ways to see how information is organized.
Organize your junk drawer, tools, and craft supplies.
Sort laundry by color or type before washing.
Digital and Online Resources
While the previous activities mentioned reference daily activities that can enforce and teach math literacy, there are many free online learning games for kids. These digital resources allow for kids to play, receive reinforcement and rewards, and work at their own pace when learning or practicing skills.
Providing support and enrichment for math learning during the early years leads to better grades, confidence, and a love of learning. It doesn’t have to be a boring task or chore. Counting, measuring, adding, subtracting, and playing games make math fun for kids and provides quality time for everyone.
So look around. Math is everywhere!