Summer Adds Up to Fun - Kumon

Summer Adds Up to Fun

June 11, 2012 ~

Summertime and math activities may not always go hand in hand, but with a little creativity, you can make math fun for your family and keep young minds fresh even while on vacation.

Plugged In

There are educational organizations everywhere working to make math more interesting for students. Check out Lure of the Labyrinth, an elaborate game for students in grades 6-8 that helps them think like mathematicians in a fun, fantasy environment. The game, designed by researchers at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), uses problem-solving questions to help students hone their math skills. In the game, students have the chance to win tablet computers.

There are also hundreds of apps and online games that can make math fun. A simple search of your phone’s app store can reveal the perfect game for your children.

On the Road

If you haven’t heard, there’s a new museum coming to New York City — the Museum of Mathematics—where children can see and touch math concepts and watch them come to life. The museum, filled with interactive exhibits, is slated to open in fall 2012.

Luckily, before it settles down in New York, the museum is bringing some of its exhibits to cities throughout the United States with a moving installation: the Math Midway. You can visit the Math Midway website to see where it’s going next!

At Home and Around Town

The easiest and most affordable way to make math fun is to apply it to things your children already enjoy doing at home. Water games are a staple of any summer vacation, and you can make them educational.  Have your children fill up water balloons with different amounts of water, keeping track of the measurements.  Bring the game outside where you can measure which balloon made the biggest splash!

When snack time rolls around, use it as an opportunity to practice fractions with younger learners. As you cut up fruit and veggies, have your child keep track of the halves, quarters or eighths. If you’re baking or cooking, have your child help with measurements. A shopping excursion is always an opportunity to teach children about money and keeping track of it. Give them money for a trip to the arcade or mall and challenge them to keep a budget.

Math is a part of everyday life, and you can point out ‘math moments’ as they come up to show your children what a huge part it plays in life. Children may see math as something that belongs in the classroom; show them that it’s here to stay, and do it in a fun way.