Helping with Maths at home
Speaking the same language
Mathematics is about thinking things through, and finding ways of solving problems. Sometimes it is also about getting the right answers. The best way to help children learn about maths is to help them enjoy it. We hope that some of the ideas in these web pages will support you in doing just that.
There are 3 things you need to remember each time you help your child with homework or just talk about maths:
1. Ask them how they did it.
Talk with your child about the methods they use. For example, if your child needs to add 28 and 17 (or 2398 and 1307), ask them how they learn to do it at school. For example:
This may be one of the ways the children work with large numbers but there may be other strategies they use as well. The methods can sometimes seem long-winded, but if the child understands them, that's what matters.
2. Help them sort out errors themselves
If your child gets wrong answers, talk about the methods they use (it is also useful to do this if they are getting the right answers!). Encourage them to check how they did it. If they get a different answer after checking, then they know they need to sort out where they went wrong. Often, as they go through what they did, they will see the error for themselves. If not, you can say 'Are you sure of that?' or 'Just go over that bit again'. Try to avoid just telling them the correct answer.
3. Praise them
Make a point of giving your child praise for what they have done well, or tried hard at. Don't dwell on their weaker points - we can support them with these at school.
On the menu on the right-hand side we have put together some activities and games you can do at home to support your child and make maths fun.
Here is a short presentation of maths and numeracy at Llanhari Primary to help you understand how we teach maths in our new curriculum.