Spending time with your children or grandchildren can be a real joy, but it’s also a golden opportunity to help them learn without even realizing it. With the latest exam data showing that just 42% of Hawaiian public school students are reaching proficiency targets in Math – the same percentage as in the previous two years – helping your child to be confident in numeracy is really important. Whether they’re following a delicious pancake recipe with you or working out how to make their Lego pieces fit together, kids need numbers. Thankfully there are lots of fun ways to support your child at home and build strong math foundations for life.

Laying fun foundations

Teaching professionals have found that simple math games can help to introduce your kids to mathematical principles in a fun way. Card games like Uno can teach them about matching colors and numbers, and counting the cards you need to pick up. Classic board games such as Monopoly help them learn to count numbers on dice, move spaces and count money; you could even get the Hawaiian edition to brush up on their local knowledge too. These traditional games are also wonderfully sociable and easy to play with less active members of the family too.

Math on the move

In a recent vacation survey, 64% of families were planning road trips as an affordable, easy way to travel. If you need something to keep the kids entertained, having some simple math games to hand can really help. Counting cars of matching colors is a nice easy game for all ages. You could also prepare colorful flash cards to test each other on your times tables as you travel.  

Mother Nature’s math class

For a really easy way to make math part of everyday life, simply step outside. As a local study finds that the average Hawaiian youth spends 3 hours a day on video games, make it your mission to step away from screens and get out into nature. Children can learn to spot shapes in nature, count petals, birds or study the shapes of different types of leaves. For a fun craft project, teach them to make a kite.

Math doesn’t have to mean sitting at a table with sums; you can use it when you bake together, make crafts or visit the park. By making numbers fun, approachable and relevant, you can remove some of the barriers which may make children feel less confident about the subject. Whether the child in your life is going to be an astronaut or sell their own paintings, math is at the core of life; help them find a little joy in it.