A Project of the Child Trends News Service Supported by the National Science Foundation

Kids’ Math Scores: Does Parental Involvement Add Up?

ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire)—Worldwide, about 6 out of every 10 children and adolescents are not meeting minimum proficiency levels in reading and mathematics. How do our kids stack up? How can busy parents support their kids’ math learning?

A new study finds that when it comes to math achievement, a parent’s support is critical. Investigators examined mothers support of their child’s math learning at 36 months and the child’s counting and calculation skills at four and a half and 6 to 7 seven years old. They found more maternal support led to better math skills and better school readiness. But scientists find that supporting your kids at home may be more challenging for low-income families who may not be able to purchase resource materials or spend as much time going over skills.

So, what can you do to give your preschool-age child an edge? Experts say parents of any income level should engage with their kids whenever possible. One technique is to label set sizes. For example, you can say, “Look, one, two, you have two pennies.” Also, choose toys that promote higher level arithmetic skill, such as Legos, blocks, and puzzles or when cooking or at the grocery store count ingredients with your child.

Other studies find that students in the United States rank below eight countries in reading and below 30 countries in math.

Contributors to this news report include: Cyndy McGrath, Executive Producer; Milvionne Chery, Field Producer; and Roque Correa, Editor.

Produced by Child Trends News Service in partnership with Ivanhoe Broadcast News and funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation

Source: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32797635/

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