When the bell rings and you tell the students to get out their math work, they groan. Not every student is excited about learning math. But at Prodigy, we think math should be fun and help students love the process of learning.
There is no one-size-fits-all way to get your math class interested because each student learns in a different way. We’ve made a list of ways to help all of your students love math.
Why Some Kids Don’t Enjoy Math
Because every kid is different, he or she might dread math class or try to avoid doing math homework for different reasons.
- Difficulty: If a student is having trouble keeping up with their math homework or understanding the lessons, it’s easy for them to lose interest, feel down, or worry.
- Boredom: If students aren’t challenged enough or need more things to do, math work they already know how to do can make them bored and lose interest.
- General interest: Perhaps your student is more interested in reading, science, or art than in learning math facts. They might be putting work first in these classes, or they might just not be interested in math.
- Math anxiety: Some students worry a lot about their math tests and grades. This stress gets worse when they struggle to understand new ideas, which makes them feel overwhelmed and lose focus.
10 Secrets to Make Maths Interesting for Students
No matter how they feel about math, whether they’re bored, anxious, disinterested, or having trouble, these 15 math class secrets can help you get every student interested.
1. Math Games
Math games are a tried-and-true technique to add interest and competition to your classroom. Whether played online or in person, math games may enthral your pupils and complement your lesson plan.
A few well-liked math games are:
- When playing card games like War, two students can create cards that are more valuable than their opponent’s by using multiplication, subtraction, or even exponent rules.
- For younger pupils, there are math stations with number blocks and other manipulatives during play-based learning activities.
- Math board games that teach kids fundamental math concepts while also fostering social and emotional competencies like cooperation and turn-taking. Try adding math facts to a tic-tac-toe board or organizing a class-wide arithmetic bingo game!
2. Visual Aids and Picture Books
Charts, picture books, and other visual aides can help visual learners in your classroom understand new ideas and give them points of reference as they work.
On websites like Teachers Pay Teachers, printables, anchor charts, and diagrams are easily accessible to make setting up a classroom simple and stress-free. To aid in their retention of important phrases and ideas, you could even let the kids create their own visual aids!
Picture books are a fantastic method to engage pupils who enjoy reading and seeing things rather than doing math. Our favorites include:
- David M. Schwartz’s G is for Googol: A Math Alphabet Book This math book examines unique mathematical ideas for each letter of the alphabet and is best suited for pupils in grades 4 through 8.
- Author Matt McElligot’s Bean Thirteen: Despite Ralph and Flora’s best efforts, the unlucky thirteenth bean continues reappearing! This tale is a ridiculous investigation into remainders and division.
- Uno’s Garden by Graeme Base: Find many plants and creatures in the woodland where Uno lives in “Uno’s Garden” by Graeme Base. To complete the journey, students must accomplish skills, riddles, and multiplication problems.
Every learner can learn new math abilities, whether they like reading or art.
3. Using Modern Technology
Modern technology can broaden perspectives and give pupils new ways to interact with their surroundings when it comes to arithmetic instruction.
Arithmetic is Fun provides students with games and math challenges that strike a mix between enjoyment and toughness.
Students now have new methods to interact with arithmetic on their terms thanks to tablets and cellphones. We compiled a list of the top 13 math applications for kids, but some of our favorites are as follows:
- An adaptive math adventure game is Prodigy Math Game.
- A colorful math program called Dragon Box makes learning basic topics like multiplication and algebra interesting.
- A nonprofit company called Khan Academy produces video classes for a range of subjects and skill levels.
4. Take a Hands-on Approach
Every instructor is aware that worksheets frequently lack interest.
Finding practical applications for mathematical formulas and concepts or incorporating student interests into pertinent job challenges are examples of a hands-on approach to teaching math.
To teach your pupils about fractions, try a beach ball throw with equations written on each piece, or bake together! Kinesthetic learners can also improve their skills by working on math puzzles like KenKen, Magic Squares, and tangram puzzles.
Traditional math tools have also been made available online through the National Library of Virtual Manipulatives for increased accessibility. It offers manipulation tasks for every grade level and is perfect for station rotations or one-to-one device use.
5. Encourage Communication With Students and Parents
Both engaging with parents and understanding students are crucial for several reasons. You can convey encouraging messages and gain insightful information about how students feel about arithmetic by attending parent-teacher conferences and sending brief comments home.
Students can reflect on their struggles, favorite activities, and areas they feel they need more practise by keeping a math notebook. You might discover something new or read items that support your observations!
6. Use Interesting and Engaging Questions
How many morph marbles do you have if you start out with two, use one in a Prodigy math combat, and then earn two more?
Word puzzles are a fantastic method to link your lesson ideas with the interests of your students. Send out a quick poll or ask students about their preferred movies, TV shows, or video games if you’re unsure of what they enjoy.
When they see their favorite Prodigy character or television program on your next handout, they’ll be thrilled, and you’ll have a class full of pupils who are truly looking forward to finishing their homework.
7. Physical Involvement
Different types of learners can benefit from methods that get students up and moving, out of their chairs, or just participating in hands-on learning activities. Try these in your classroom:
- Writing and performing skits about mathematical ideas a search for geometrical patterns or shapes.
- During long periods in class, students can benefit from brain breaks to keep focused.
- Interactive games with pertinent math challenges include “Around the World,” dice, flashcards, and manipulatives.
Flipped classes and think-pair-share exercises can also help students gain practical experience and discuss novel concepts with peers in real-time.
8. Use Real Objects
Numerous math resources exist that can assist students with visualizing abstract mathematical ideas in the actual world, such as:
- Play money
- Abacus for number sense and counting
- Geometric shapes such as spheres, prisms, and others
- Base ten blocks, number lines, and clocks are examples of manipulatives.
- Flashcards for math vocabulary or subtraction, addition, multiplication, and division
- Facts, or small objects like gummy bears, buttons, or rocks for pattern-making
- Add these components to problem-solving exercises for additional learning opportunities.
9. Focus on Your Students
It’s simple to concentrate on completing your course load for the year; after all, isn’t that what students really need to learn?
However, switching to student-centered learning strategies might assist you in meeting the needs of each student in your class. Student-centered learning includes children in decision-making regarding their education, aids in the development of a growth mindset, and promotes the creation of conceptual connections.
Typical student-centered strategies include:
- Math is taught in interdisciplinary courses with other topics.
- Projects for service learning that integrate academic objectives with volunteer work
- Pre-teaching and regular formative assessments support individualized learning.
- Conferences are run by students who provide input and make decisions regarding their education.
10. Apply Lessons to Life
In many math classes, you’ll hear students ask, “Are we really ever going to utilise this in real life?”
Make connections between what they’re studying and the actual world to help pupils comprehend the wonder and advantages of arithmetic! Ask community members to speak about their employees that include using math, or have kids do some research on various career routes that employ the ideas they are learning.
No matter what they are learning, students will do better in school and in life if they are in a fun and positive environment.
Don’t be afraid to switch things up and try out different ways to make math fun in your class. Find out which ones your students like best, and then use those to keep them interested in math class.