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Ask the expert

Ask the expert

I would like to work with my son who is a preschooler and help develop his mathematical ability. What can I do and how can I help him understand different concepts? Is he too young? -  Lena

You can introduce your child to mathematical concepts as early as 3 years old. Studies have proven that early math abilities are more important than early reading skills! Start by helping your child explore different attributes of objects. Encourage them to point out the similarities and differences. Let them try and sort them into different groups systematic organising, arranging, and grouping of objects facilitates addition, subtraction, number sequences, and proportional thinking. You can introduce your child to this concept by letting him organise arrange and group his/her belongings.

Patterning is also very important; help them recognise a pattern in nature or in numbers by counting, and skip counting. Encourage them to mimic, extend, and eventually create their own patterns.

Learning how to measure distance, capacity, weight, and time, in order to compare and describe the world in quantitative terms is essential. Let them help you cook, this will build a basic introduction of units of measure and an understanding of how parts make up 
the whole.

A first look at geometric shapes and the infinite world of two- and three-dimensional space is a basis for developing spatial relationships.
Remember that mathematical education and early math skill development has been proven to be paramount not only for later math outcomes but also for later reading and science achievement.

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