One of the best ways to engage kids and get them interested in math is to show them how we see and use math in our everyday life. Seeing math in real life helps kids to recognize it’s relevance to them, shows them why it matters and can deepen their understanding by providing a meaningful context.
Why is it Helpful to Teach Math in Real Life?
There are so many reasons to help kids see math in real life and how it is relevant to them.
First of all, a lot of kids assume that math is NOT relevant to their life. By showing them ways to use and apply math that are actually relevant and meaningful to them we can debunk this myth.
But more than that, applying math skills to real life will help them to better understand and visualize the math they’re learning:
- To understand math deeply, our brain needs to form connections. Seeing math in real life helps students form connections between abstract math concepts and real, everyday life, thus strengthening their understanding.
- When math is relevant for students, they are more interested, engaging and willing to participate. Have kids who refuse to do their work? Try making it relate to their hobbies, favorite things or everyday life!
- Exploring math in a real life context will help kids to develop their problem solving skills. This is the reason we teach math–to train thinkers and problem solvers who can take what they know and apply it to an actual situation.
Where Do We See Math in Nature?
Although I think it is important for kids to see how math is used and relevant to their everyday lives, I also love showing them how we see math in the world around us.
This helps kids to see math in a creative, beautiful and open way. It also allows kids the opportunity to explore patterns such as Fibonacci sequence or fractals, which are not always covered in a typical math classroom.
Want to learn more about how and where we see math in the world around us?
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Find Additional Math in Real Life Lessons & Problems Below:
Looking for more ideas for teaching and exploring math in real life? I’ve got you covered! From the kitchen to lunch menus to budgets, there’s a variety of resources for kids of all ages.
This is an ever growing resource list, which includes a variety of articles and printable resources to help kids see, think about and explore math in real life.
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