With the advent of civilization, math became a field of study. In the present day, math is an absolutely necessary subject for day-to-day living. This significance is evident in the school curriculum and the importance given to math education. Learning math results in both cognitive development as well as effective outcomes. It takes both experience and practice to learn anything. Motor learning, verbal learning, conceptual learning, perceptual learning, and problem solving are all examples of different forms of learning.
In math, the majority of learning is based on concepts, principles, or problem solving. As these types of learning are higher-order learning processes, cognitive activity and effort on the part of the learner are essential. Theories for initial learning point out that effort plays an important role in learning.
When we consider math learning from a logical perspective, it goes through a higher cognitive process, especially since math content and processes are interconnected and abstract in nature.
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Reasons for Kids Having Difficulties in Math
If your child is experiencing problems with math, there may be a reason for it. Check the list below to see if any of these factors are contributing to your child’s math difficulties.1
- Kids do not put in significant effort.
- Kids’ lack of previous knowledge (e.g., numbers, mathematical symbols, and their operations)
- Reluctance to ask a teacher or others for assistance
- Inattention in the classroom.
- Mathematical disinterest stems from difficulty in comprehending questions.
- Lack of time management when solving a problem in an examination hall.
- There is trouble following class due to a lack of drill work, which leads to an inability to link distinct themes in separate chapters. As a result, it takes a long time to absorb things.
- Lack of self-efficacy also makes it harder for kids to analyze mathematical ideas.
- Kids struggle to convert problems into mathematical forms and apply formulae to them.
Students/Kids Issues (Difficulties of learning math from an early age)
In addition to the reasons listed above, there may be other reasons why kids become stuck and have difficulty learning math at an early age. These can be any of the following:
- Frustrated feelings.
- Unable to process the content.
- Having difficulty with basic mathematical operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division (even if the question is straightforward) and spending a long time thinking about them.
- Having difficulty developing a series of math operations that lead to the result.
- Can’t remember the multiplication table or will forget it within a few days.
- Counting fingers for all math operations all the time.
- Mixing mathematical symbols.
- Failing to learn simple geometric shapes.
- Making simple mistakes due to memory problems.
- Cannot learn the right-left concept or constantly make mistakes in this regard.
- Experiencing attention disorders or cannot concentrate on the subject.
- Paying the wrong amount of money or not calculating the change during shopping.
- Having difficulties counting coins.
- Having difficulty keeping score in games.
- Lack of understanding of the concepts of time, date, and hour.
- Loss of confidence in games that require tracking speed, distance, and directions.
- Frequently making mistakes in games that require logic and strategy.
How can These Challenges be Addressed?
Learning math must be fun for them, and it must come from someone they like and know. It is simpler for kids to accept mathematical advice from their peers than from others. Learning math is more effective when done one-on-one as opposed to with a group. It will increase kids’ concentration in math and the tutor/teacher’s focus on one child, resulting in better outcomes and an efficient learning process.2
Practical and Interesting Ways for Kids to Understand Math
- Read the sentences in a math question
- Read numbers, read numbers from the right, and copy numbers
- Understanding unit values, tens, and hundreds make it difficult for writing, especially in other more complex calculation operations such as summing down operations; they arrange unit values in groups of tens, or values in hundreds of tens.
- Recognize the symbol of the calculation operation
- Identify shape, even if the shape is inverted reverse (example: equilateral triangle, isosceles triangle).
- Know and understand the sign “,” as a decimal sign
- Calculate forward and backward
- Calculate by rote
- Read, understand, and remember the “timetable”
- State days in a week, month, and year
- State time and understand the concept
- Understand the concept of money
- Use the calculator well
- Use percentage
- Using formulas
- Use formulas for different questions
- Try to be patient
- Try to motivate yourself
- Try to play math games, and puzzle games on the internet
- Do not compare with others
- Collaborate with the teacher and try to ask as many questions as you can
- Remove distracting items and try to focus on your logical and reasoning abilities
- Develop your skills of intuition, when does a proof seem right or seem wrong?
- Take an active approach, reconstruct your approach to proofs, and you might even produce your own version of a proof!
- Build an imaginary model of the topic you’re learning about. How do they relate to each other? As another respondent says, you could draw a picture to capture your understanding.
- Understanding is more important than rote learning.
- Find topics and books that you enjoy. Math can be fun.
- Never think the subject is hard and try to do the problems till you get them. Start doing the revision a month before the board exams. You should get rid of the math anxiety.
- Get up early in the morning, exercise, and take a deep breath. This relieves tension and calms the mind, and you can solve the problems easily without much stress.
- If you’re having trouble solving a problem, discuss it with your friends. Try solving with your peers; this will actually give you ideas for solving and will help you learn about the subject more efficiently.
- Practice the problems daily. Don’t delay it; make a separate note for practicing.
- Get one-on-one tutoring so that you can grasp math concepts better.
Tips for Parents on How to Help Their Kids Solve this Problem
Parents should sit down with their kids after school and do some math practice with them every night. This will help in the development of their knowledge and skills. Parents must determine which areas of math their child struggles and identify problem areas. Once you know, you can work with your child’s teacher or tutor to devise a strategy for dealing with it. Most importantly, make math fun for your child by creating math games you can play together and then attempting to find daily applications (for example, have your child practice math while grocery shopping by calculating cost or while cooking or baking by following a recipe). Maintain a positive attitude and hire a tutor to teach the child one-on-one.
Well, does this article answer your question? Visit BYJU’S FutureSchool Blog for more tips and tricks to make learning math fun for your child.
- Gafoor, K. A., & Kurukkan, A. (n.d.). Learner and Teacher perception on Difficulties in Learning and Teaching Mathematics: Some Implications. https://files.eric.ed.gov/fulltext/ED568368.pdf
- Sofwan Mahmud, M., Syazwan Zainal, M., Rosli, R., & Mistima Maat, S. (2020). Dyscalculia: What We Must Know about Students’ Learning Disability in Mathematics? Universal Journal of Educational Research, 8(12B), 8214–8222. https://doi.org/10.13189/ujer.2020.082625