Is it a struggle for you to get through to your math students? If you have been tasked with teaching math, then you realize that it’s not only a struggle for your students to learn it, but it’s also a struggle for you to TEACH it as well. If your students are just not getting it, don’t fret. There are plenty of techniques that you can utilize in order to help them (and help yourself). Here are seven ideas for you to consider to be more effective at teaching mathematics:
Encourage Hands-On Learning
Math is a very abstract concept for many people, but the good news is that there are actually quite a few ways to teach it in a hands-on style. First of all, you can utilize LEGO bricks to teach a number of different math skills, including such things as understanding place value, mastering perimeter, grasping multiplication tables, and many other math skills.
Observe and Adjust Accordingly
Are there times where you get stuck in the “one lesson per day” mindset? This is okay but can have a tendency to get stuck in a rut if you do that too often. Of course, this will require some analysis of your pacing, but don’t be afraid to monitor. First of all, take a long hard look at the dynamics and look at who seems to be getting the material and who doesn’t. Additionally, don’t be afraid to talk to the students individually if need be.
Connect the Math to Other Subjects
Do your students have other subjects that they are interested in over math? Well, that’s understandable, and there’s no reason for you to fret. Even if your students have other interests, this is the perfect opportunity for you to show them how math is connected to the greater world. You can read books that are connected to math and you can even show them how math is connected to the world of art or music!
Do Some Math Games
Who doesn’t enjoy playing games? Use this to your advantage by turning your math instruction into a game! One of the advantages of games is that they can make learning more fun. Games can assist you in promoting computational fluency, a mathematical mindset, and an understanding of operations. Moreover, the home-school connection can easily be strengthened with this method.
Make Some Testing Pathways
Yes, you have to teach to the test, but there are definitely ways that you can “sneak it in”, so to speak. Giving quick five-minute quizzes is one great way to do this. You also should incorporate some digital resources to monitor your students and you should be in good shape.
Keep Your Own Math Demons at Bay
Solid math instruction is often entirely contingent on your own personal attitude. If you have had some personal issues with math yourself, make sure that you do all you can not to let that transfer to your students. For example, make sure that you avoid consoling a student if they are encountering difficulty. Instead, encourage them to keep working hard to try to grasp any difficult math concept they encounter.
Don’t Necessarily Rule Out Traditional Math Worksheets
There is nothing wrong with practicing these skills! Traditional math worksheets are a great way to sharpen your students’ skills. You not only can practice traditional multiplication and division skills, but you also can give them worksheets to practice ratios and proportions. Simply put, as long as you stay as organized as possible, you will be able to teach math effectively to your students.