Saturday, November 21, 2009

Teaching Math

I loved math when I was in school. Its practical and the answer come to you if you follow the steps and the rules. Math becomes a habit after some time.
Math must make sense to the kid. Math is about ‘how’ and ‘why’. And there’s a lot of this happening through our cooking experiences.

There must be an ultimate goal with Math; Kids must understand why they need it for afterwards. To navigate in this complex world. Math is about reasoning which is so important for later parts of their lives.

The tools used for math is numerous – through books, math exercises, math kits, games and so on.

Add cooking to your list.

To get our kids to love math, we must show it through our attitude and enthusiasm for math and how it solves problems.

I found that teaching maths through baking was easy and fun and prepared them for lessons at school. Baking teaches:
• Measuring
• Estimating
• Counting
• Size and shape

My younger son was about 3 when I got him into the kitchen with me. My elder boy started ‘cooking’ when he was 2. I would tend to work with them on measuring flour, sugar, milk and oil correctly. I hand them the cups and explain what is needed while reading the recipe. I would try to get them to read with me.

We also work on estimating because for some recipes I might add or take away certain ingredients, but I don’t use any form of measurement. So they learn to eyeball and look for the ingredient and know whether it’s too much or too little. Of course counting cookies and sorting decorations is just plain fun.

Hope this gives you some ideas for bringing education into your Christmas cookie baking this year.

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