Math Problems: Does Your Child Need Help?

Every child has a subject in school that they are great at. But there’s usually also an area where your child may have some difficulties. It is very common for a child to experience some problems when he is building his math skills. But how can you tell when it is just a little hurdle and when you may need to call in some reinforcements? Here are some telltale signs that your child may need some extra help in math.

Working at Home
Some signs that your child may display at home that may suggest he is having troubles with math include:

  • You notice she has difficulties writing numbers correctly (i.e. writes some numbers backwards)
  • He gets frustrated easily when he does his math homework or math in general
  • Has difficulties identifying and remembering numbers
  • She refuses to try math, saying she is "too stupid" or that she "just can’t do it"
  • Can’t solve simple math problems in his head
  • Gets overly worried about her math homework, that it won’t be done correctly
  • Has troubles completing homework or it is not done properly
  • He doesn’t want to go to school and/or is particularly anxious about being criticized
  • Has difficulties with concepts like "bigger and smaller" or "before and after"

At School
If you notice some problems with your child’s learning at home, it is always a good idea to schedule a talk with her teacher. Her teacher may be able to give you a better view of "the bigger picture" when it comes to your child’s learning. Many children, when tested, are found to have dyscalculia.

In other cases, your child may just feel that there is too much pressure on her to perform well and therefore she is pushing herself too hard. Relaxing your attitude towards her learning or discussing the issue with her may help relieve some of this anxiety.

In other cases, your child may actually need a bit of extra attention at home when it comes to learning math. Play some extra card games, do some baking together and enjoy a puzzle together to help her learn in a fun atmosphere. Read Building Math Skills for fun math activities to do at home.

However, if your child’s teacher informs you that he:

  • Gets very anxious about tests
  • Has troubles following simple instructions to solve math problems
  • Is acting up in class
  • Grades are starting to slip

then you may want to look into hiring a tutor. If your child’s teacher advises it, you may also want to make an appointment to see a learning specialist to investigate the possibility of your child having a learning disability.