Math Is Fun: 6 Ways To Inspire Kids To Love Math

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I’ve personally never been very good at math. In fact, most of my family – including extended family – does not like it as a subject. I struggled with math throughout elementary school, middle school, high school and even college. I was thrilled when I had all my requirements out of the way and no longer had to take any more courses in algebra and geometry.

Nevertheless, math is necessary in our lives. It’s woven into every facet of my life, from budgeting for my business to budgeting for groceries. I’ve made my peace with it and then married a man who gets it. 🙂

math is fun - The Everyday Mom Life



I figured our children would need a good role model when it came to learning the skills required in mathematics and knew I wasn’t going to be it.

But like all things in parenting, the reality is that you share the responsibility with your partner on everything, including math homework. So, since preschool I’ve been working with my daughter showing her how to add and subtract with Cheerios.

Make it meaningful early on

Kids are little sponges and love to soak up all the things you tell them (and the things you don’t tell them). So, while your kids are learning their ABC’s make sure they are not only learning their 123’s, but also learning how to use them. For instance, have them count items you put in the grocery cart or the price of toys. Have them count trees as you walk down the street or let them measure out ingredients for dinner. Make math meaningful by showing how it applies to everyday life. Kids don’t have to specifically know it’s “math,” but the goal is to give them a foundation for learning ahead.

math is fun - The Everyday Mom Life

Don’t push your issues with math on to them

Just because I hate math doesn’t mean my children have to. I try to keep my mouth shut whenever my daughter says something about not liking it. Instead of reinforcing her fears about the concepts being hard, I try to strengthen the idea that it can be fun and useful too. You don’t want your (or MY, in this case) negative attitude about a subject to rub off on your child.




Play games

In order to try and make math fun, I believe it is imperative to play games that involve the skills. There are games that you can purchase – like Monopoly and the Game of Life – that will just seem like normal games but will also enhance math skills. There are games you can purchase that specifically focus on aspects, like multiplication and division, such as the animal game Pet Me, Math War and Multiplication Mosaics. Or, you can simply make your own. The goal is to show children how math can be fun and challenging in a way that makes them want play.

Grab this counting printable for preschoolers in the Printables section!

math is fun - The Everyday Mom Life

Click here to grab more information on this money matching game!

math is fun - The Everyday Mom Life

Get them extra help if they need it

Admitting your children might need extra help in a subject can be difficult but getting him/her that extra help can be imperative to their lifelong learning – especially when it comes to mathematics. From personalized tutoring for K-12 to advanced math and algebra and geometry, Sylvan Learning can help your children learn all the skills they need to succeed in math.

Beginning with simple skills, like multiplication and division, through advanced placement and even test prep, the tutors at Sylvan Learning will help your child break down mathematics skills to give your child the confidence he/she needs to do well in school and on tests.

The Sylvan Learning curriculum aligns with most school standards and teaching techniques, and the math tutors excel at motivating children by providing a mix of guided support, interactive lessons and motivational feedback and rewards.



Teach them that practice makes perfect

When kids struggle in sports, parents often tell them that they need more practice. The same is true for all of our skills, including math. Having your child practice concepts that are difficult for him/her will help enforce the idea that even if something is challenging, it is worth it.

math is fun - The Everyday Mom Life

Find a math role model

All kids have role models in life and helping them to have a role model in education is just as important as an athletic role model when it comes to inspiration. For math, there are more choices out there than you might have originally thought, and they’re not all men. Here are a few historical examples with links to more present-day:

Sophie Germain (1776 – 1831) – a mathematician and an early trailblazer, studied under the false name of Joseph Lagrange at École Polytechnique, a prestigious institution for higher learning and research near Paris. She also became the first woman to win a prize from the French Academy of Sciences for her work on the theory of elasticity.

Find more historical, female mathematicians here and here.

Katherine Johnson (1918) – Johnson is an African-American mathematician and scientist who was in charge of ensuring that the first American astronaut to orbit Earth was able to do so without an issue. During a 35-year career at NASA, she earned a reputation for mastering complex manual calculations and helped the space agency pioneer the use of computers.

You can find a list of more modern, female mathematicians here and here

Isaac Newton (1642 -1726) – one of the most famous early mathematicians was Isaac Newton. He is widely recognized as one of the most influential scientists of all time. He formulated the laws of motion and universal gravitation, which formed the dominant scientific viewpoint until the theory of relativity. He used mathematics to prove Kepler’s Laws of Planetary Motion and built the first reflecting telescope.

You can find a full list of mathematicians, broken down by ancestry and more here.

For more information on Sylvan Learning and the mathematics help they provide, click here. For more on algebra and geometry specifically, click here.

For more parenting tips, click here.



29 COMMENTS

  1. I dislike Math so much that I chose a college course with little to no math subjects. I do fine with the basics but add those xyz’s, angles, formulas and tables, I am lost. Learning to love math should really start at an early age. I am doing my best to make my grandchildren love playing with numbers so they don’t end up like me. 🙂

  2. This is a great post with wonderful tips. I grew up LOVING math. None of my five children share that love. In fact they pretty much hate math. I welcome these tips so I can try to help my grandchildren now.

  3. I am definitely guilty of letting my negative attitude rub off, and my mother did the same to me! Math is just not our thing, and now I see my own daughter having difficulties. Your post gave me a lot of encouragement!

  4. Fantastic advice. It’s very hard not to put your feelings about math out there. It’s also very hard to get some kids to accept tutoring help. I wish I could find a way to get her to accept? Have any ideas on how to get past that?

  5. I have always loved math. I took it throughout high school and even took out a math book at the library after I graduated because I missed it so much. Making math fun for kids sure does go a long way towards getting them to enjoy it.

  6. Math can be such a tough thing, and it’s good to keep up with it so that it doesn’t overwhelm you. These are all great ideas and a good way to foster an understanding of math from an early age.

  7. Math was something I never liked until I taught elementary school. I had to learn how to have fun with it and now I love it. Two of my three kids struggle with it and I really do understand, which is why I am trying to make it fun for them also. My daughter just picks it up and does amazingly well, but my boys have a hard time.

  8. I loved math when I was in school. Algebra was my favorite subject. Now, with the way Math is I just cannot get excited about it. This looks like a great way to get kids into math with the new way of teaching it these days

  9. My daughter said that she really don’t like Math because sometimes she’s having troubles with number and I think these are the best way for me to reintroduce to her this Math subject. Thanks for sharing!

  10. My mom should have read this when I was a kid! LOL! But all jokes aside, getting them a tutor or extra help is the best advice ever. I needed that and I never got it, so I grew up hating math and science.

  11. My kids are still very little, but we definitely do the “counting everything” sort of thing. Count the windows in the house. Count the shirts we are hanging up. Etc. It’s such an easy way to throw some math and learning in with our daily routine.

  12. Math can be hard, but it’s so important and used in everyone’s daily life, so as a parent, I try to impose this importance on my kids. The more they practice the better they get, just with anything else. These are great tips to help kids learn math skills! Thanks for sharing!

  13. Totally agree to make it fun for any subject so that they fall in love with them. Having the lesson like playing game too will make math fun too. The kids dont even realised they are actually learning and thought they are playing.

  14. Such great tips … I’m not strong in math and TODAY’S math is HORRIBLE. There have been a few nights I’ve had to get my husband to help our daughter after he gets home. But, it’s definitely been important that I not share with my daughter that I struggle with math, because she has a tendency to want to be lazy and not try.

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