Kindergarten is all about reading, or is it? Actually, kindergartners learn some very important math concepts in addition to all the reading. Kindergartners spend a lot of time on counting, and once that is mastered, they move on to kindergarten addition. Here are four questions you can ask your kindergartner to assess their understanding of addition quickly, so you can make changes either to challenge or help your child when needed.
1. Questions with Manipulatives
Throughout the day, you have many opportunities to assess your child’s understanding of kindergarten addition. When you have a handful of something, such as a snack or a few small toys, add a few more to the handful. Ask “If I had five Cheerios and added three more, how many do I have now?” If your child understands how to combine these items, even if he has to count, then he has a basic understanding of what addition means.
2. What Does Plus Mean?
Ask your kindergarten “what does plus mean?” If your child can give a basic explanation of kindergarten addition, then he understands what plus means. Remember that your child is a kindergartner so his math vocabulary may not be very well developed, but he should be able to tell you that “plus” means to combine the two numbers together to get a total.
3. Can You Find the Total?
Total is another important math term, and asking your child to find the total of a couple of groups of items, even if counting is involved, will show a basic understanding of kindergarten addition. Ask about totals all the time to reinforce these math concepts and to continue to assess your child’s level of learning and understanding. The continuous effort can go a long way in future math performance.
4. What Does the Plus Sign Ask You to Do?
Show your child an addition problem with a plus sign. Ask her what the plus sign tells her to do. Like asking “What does plus mean?” you are looking for a basic understanding of combining the two numbers. If she says “This means you put the two numbers together” instead of “adding” then she knows what she should for kindergarten addition.
If you ask these simple questions and find that there is a lack of understanding of kindergarten addition, then it’s time to get some extra help. Starting on the right foot in kindergarten will pave the way for a love of math through the years. So how can you do this? With the help of Thinkster Math, a proven iPad-based learning system that gives access to coaching from experienced instructors while providing education in a format that kids will love.