When Math Doesn’t Add Up: 5 Ways to Build Math Skills Over the Summer

When students close their math texts and stop problem solving, their math skills diminish. Over the summer, students tend to lose over a month’s worth of math knowledge. This leaves students playing a game of catch up when school restarts in the fall.  Students struggle to stay on top of the curriculum when they return to school, as math concepts build on each other. Moreover, since math lays the foundation for learning other subjects, falling behind in math creates academic deficits in other subjects. 

GAMECHANGER Tutoring Connection has 5 ways to build math skills over the summer.

  1. Spend time cooking and doing daily chores. Cooking requires measuring ingredients, counting time, and balancing varied amounts of ingredients. This is a great way to teach a variety of math skills, from counting to fractions to solving algebraic equations. Have your student try to tweak recipes to see if different amounts of certain ingredients yield a similar result or better result. Additionally, doing daily chores helps students learn to classify objects and count Chores like sorting laundry can help students understand concepts like greater than, less than and equal to, which helps them quantify. 
  2. Play board games. Playing board games is a great way to bond with your students. It’s also a great way to teach students everything from counting to negotiating. For example, playing a game like Scrabble helps your student strategize mathematically as they try to get the highest score per word. This is another way to learn math in an experiential manner, to help math become part of your student’s everyday life. This also provides an opportunity for students to explain how they think and reason. Therefore, by playing games, you can identify gaps in your student’s ability to reason or to think mathematically. Not to mention, games like Scrabble are a great way to build vocabulary words too!
  3. Do all different kinds of puzzles. Puzzles give younger students opportunities to explore important and vital math concepts. This includes identifying shapes and sizes as well as strengthening spatial reasoning skills. Researchers at The University of Chicago found that children who play with puzzles between the ages of two and four, develop stronger spatial reasoning skills. Solving puzzles is also a great way to develop logical thinking skills, which are essential to becoming a strong and capable math student. Learning to reason is an essential skill to becoming a strong math student, and puzzles require students to reason. Puzzles help students to improve and train their memory, attention, analytical, and creative skills. This helps students become stronger problem solvers. Moreover, the more patience and resilience students develop when it comes to problem solving, the stronger their mathematical skills will be in the future. 
  4. Do a daily math problem. Practice, practice, practice. The more students practice their math skills, the more they will develop a greater understanding of mathematical concepts. Understanding mathematical concepts will make students more confident. Doing a daily math problem helps students incorporate math into their daily lives. Think of it like an academic lunch. Students might want to skip it, but doing it well will fortify their skills and help them avoid a summer slide. 
  5. Work with a tutor referred by GAMECHANGER. If students ended the school year behind in math, if students are concerned about losing math knowledge and understanding over the summer, or if they just want to get ahead, working with a tutor referred by GAMECHANGER Tutoring Connection will make all the difference. Spending one hour a week with a GAMECHANGER math tutor will help your student build skills and confidence. Math concepts build on each other, so if your student falls behind in one math course, they are bound to struggle in the next, more advanced math course. But working with a GAMECHANGER math tutor can change all of this. When your student returns to school in the fall, they won’t feel the anxiety of having to keep up or catch up. Instead, they will be able to confidently focus on new concepts and continue to thrive.

GAMECHANGER Tutoring Connection is dedicated to helping students avoid the summer slide in math and in every academic subject. Contact GAMECHANGER Tutoring Connection for more information on our academic support services for students in kindergarten through post-college career prep. 


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