Learning Basic Math Facts Doesn’t Have to be Boring and Painful

Memorizing basic math facts isn’t always fun.  We’ve all done it, and our children will have to do it too to be successful at math.  Although some schools no longer focus on memorization, it seems necessary and something that many parents end up doing with their child at home to give them an extra boost at school.  But, for busy parents who are already inundated by homework and spelling tests, and running their children from one sport to another, there has to be an easy way to teach this skill.

Parents have to set aside a few minutes a day, even if it’s only 10 minutes, to help their child learn their basic math facts.  Luckily, there are many options available from simple games to having children help with cooking to playing games or practicing online. 

One great way to help your kids learn is to give them visual help.  With the use of pennies from a jar, you can show them what two times two looks like, for example.  Setting the oven timer for ten minutes helps your child get used to practicing for ten minutes at a time and helps them focus.  They won’t have to keep asking you if you are done yet either! 

Another way to practice basic math facts is while driving to or from school each day.  Take a stack of index cards and write multiplication, division, subtraction or addition questions on each card depending on what your child is studying.  Place them in groups of ten with a rubber band and change them so that they have ten problems a day, five days a week.  This allows them to practice fifty math questions a week.  Slow and steady wins the race.

There are literally thousands of web sites devoted to math.  Find a few good ones and bookmark them for your child.  Make it part of their nightly study routine to do at least a set of math problems.  Many children love playing on the computer, so it’s easier to get them to practice math online.  Fun games or simple timed tests can help your child become a math wiz in no time.