Today, early childhood educators have the advantage of research that shows teachers and parents can enlighten young children with mathematics through play and explore new ways of fostering math concepts. If only my kindergarten teacher had known that doing a cooking activity or building block structures would strengthen my math abilities, maybe I wouldn’t harbor such animosity toward math.
The reality is, long before children get into school, they encounter mathematical concepts everyday. As parents and early childhood educators we must seize those opportunities and make them fun. Find what interests a child and then find a way to teach a math concept like sorting, counting, measuring or comparing, through that interest. You don’t have to love math or even be skilled at it to find fun everyday activities.
Check out NAEYC’s May 2009 Young Children for several articles on math in the early learning environment. You can also go to PBS KIDS for great math activities that connect to literacy, science and social-emotional development
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