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Math Games and Summer Vacation

Just because school will soon be out for the summer, it doesn’t mean a child’s brain should stop working. In fact, keeping a child’s mind fresh with review, as well as new ideas, can keep those brains in tip-top shape for the following school year.

During the summer, it is important to help your children retain and enhance what they learned in school. Most kids don’t want to sit down and do anything educational during the summer, so this can present a challenge.

Math skills, particularly, can be hard to retain during summer vacation. Kids may spend hours reading books at the beach and doing crafts at camp, but doing math can be extremely unappealing.

Teachers know that the several months off for summer vacation sees considerable slippage in their students’ math skills. Kids who practice summer math will have an easier time transitioning back to school, while kids who don’t may lose a couple months of learning.

Don’t let this summer be a math-avoidance time. Who says math has to be something your child dreads? It should, instead, be something the child looks forward to and thrives on. The trick is to teach your kids math by combining it with fun activities.

Many years ago I discovered that math games fit the bill wonderfully! Math games put children in exactly the right frame of mind for learning. Children are normally very eager to play games. They relax when they play, and they concentrate. They don’t mind repeating certain facts or procedures over and over. In an engaging math game, children will be more focused and retention will be greater.

Dittos, flashcards, or workbook pages are not appropriate if you want your child to be excited about math. Children throw themselves into playing games the way they never throw themselves into filling out workbook pages or dittos.

Games offer a pleasant way for you to get involved in your child’s math education. You may be one of those many parents who don’t feel comfortable with math, or who assume it takes special expertise to help your child. Believe me, as a veteran teacher, when I say that you don’t have to be a math genius to play a game. With a math game, you don’t have to worry about pushing or pressuring your child. All that you have to do is propose a game to your child and start to play.

Games can help your child learn almost everything they need to master in elementary math. Games solidify the achievements of children who are already good at math, and they shore up children who need shoring up.

There are plenty of fun math games that you and your children can play to help them retain their math skills. Get a jump start on the coming school year! Sit down and play some math games with your children.

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