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 "...Child...Struggle With Math...Reason 1" 
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Post "...Child...Struggle With Math...Reason 1"
5 Common Reasons Why Your Child May Struggle With Math in School: Reason 1
by: Phil Rowlands




REASON 1: “The Most Important Learning State Is Often Absent.”

"The teacher pretended that algebra was a perfectly natural affair, to be taken for granted, whereas I didn't even know what numbers were. Mathematics classes became sheer terror and torture to me.

I was so intimidated by my incomprehension that I did not dare to ask any questions."

Carl Gustav Jung: 26 July 1875 – 6 June 1961) was a Swiss psychiatrist, an influential thinker and the founder of Analytical Psychology. (Source: Wikpedia)

Young children are natural learners. They are genetically programmed to learn.

Here’s how Alison Gobnik, Ph.D, Andrew N. Meltzoff, Ph.D, and Patricia K. Kuhl, Ph. D, describe a baby’s capacity for learning.

"Walk upstairs, open the door gently, and look in the crib. What do you see? Most of us see a picture of innocence and helplessness, a clean slate. But, in fact, what we see in the crib is the greatest mind that has ever existed, the most powerful learning machine in the universe."

From "The Scientist in the Crib"

Why is it then that at some point in the not too distant future many parents throw their hands up in despair and wonder, “Whatever happened to that happy child who couldn’t wait to get to school?”

Now every day is a battle. Headaches, sickness, tantrums, tears . . . there just has to be a reason. Could it be bullying . . . school phobia . . . a personality clash with the teacher? It’s possible but it’s just as possible it could be a subject your child is desperately trying to avoid. A subject that invokes anxiety and fear and can produce a physical reaction that is very real.

It might be something you suffered from yourself, something you still feel guilty and ashamed of! That’s right . . . the math lesson.

The comments below were taken from recent posts on myLot.com in response to the question, “Ever had a most hated subject when you were in school?” They were representative of 70% of the responses.

“I despised math of any kind. To me it was like trying to learn another language...all of it. I still hate it! Anything involving math makes my head hurt.”

“I hated math. It was horrible. And the teachers . . . couldn't explain it very well because they didn't understand why we don't understand!”

“I thought it was the most boring and confusing subject . . . That would be my idea of hell having to sit through math classes!”

Twenty years from now will your child be posting comments like these on some website blog? By then the damage will have been done.

So, what do you need to do to ensure your child is not intimidated and terrorised to the point where he is actually afraid to ask a question?

Apparently Einstein’s mother never asked him what he learnt in school only what questions he asked. When a child is too intimidated or embarrassed to ask a question then there is a serious problem somewhere that needs to be addressed urgently.

The most important state as an absolute prerequisite for learning is the emotional state. This is particularly true for young children. If a child is feeling stressed, intimidated or if something has upset him prior to him arriving at school he will not be in any state to learn anything. Stress causes the equivalent of an electrical storm in the brain cutting off access to all the areas of the brain that control our higher thinking skills. Math seems to induce more stress than any other subject.

What you must do is create an environment at home where you child feels secure and where learning math can be challenging but always fun. On the premise ‘prevention is better than cure’ it would be best if you created this learning environment before your child starts school. Whether you like it or not you are your child’s first and most important preschool teacher.

Before you run for cover, or protest that you hate maths as much as anyone in the history of the world, or you wouldn’t have a clue where to start anyway, allow me to ask you one more question.

Are you prepared to embark on a journey of self discovery with your child, a journey through a rich and colorful landscape of pattern and relationships guided by play, games and open-ended activities? A journey that will ensure your child grasps the most important math concepts naturally and incidentally as he is engaged in play and problem solving that is always matched to his level of development?”

“Are you prepared to commit to spending time and engaging regularly with your child?”

If the answer is “YES!” then I can help you and your child discover that learning math can be a hugely enjoyable and rewarding experience.


About The Author
Before retirement Phil Rowlands was a primary school headteacher in the UK for 27 years. He has a deep interest in brain-based-research particularly with regard to how it impacts on children’s learning and is the author of several leaning programs including ‘How Brain-Friendly Learning Can Release Your Child’s Infinite Potential‘

For more information visit www.helpyourchildsucceed.com

Visit the author's web site at:
http://www.helpyourchildsucceed.com



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[Note: Due to a size limitation, the title, above, had to be abbreviated. Apologies to the author and ArticleCity.com. - Admin]
This article was posted by permission.


Sat Aug 01, 2009 10:28 am
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