Math Advice

Updated on March 18, 2008
D.G. asks from Newark, NJ
4 answers

My son has been doing well in Math during Kindergarten/1st grade. However, I have noticed that when he gets a sheet with addition/subtraction mixed in--he forgets and adds when he needs to subtract or vice versa. I'm going to start having him practice one math sheet everyday; but any advice on how to get him to focus on the math sign (+/_).

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answers from Hartford on

I agree with having him circle the sign. Another way that might be fun is to have him use a highlighter and highlight all the signs first (use one color for add and one color for subtract), then do all the problems. He might like doing flash cards instead of "a sheet" and you could buy or make a set with different colors for add and subtract. Lastly, I might suggest asking him to check his work when done...if you add, the answer is more than either number...if you subtract, the answer is less. That way he wouldn't actually have to calculate them all again to check, but just use his number sense. (I've taught grades 5, 6 and been elementary math support teacher, but now am a SAHM to a four year old and 20 month old.) H.



answers from New York on


I am a former elementary teacher now a stay at home mom. This is a common problem with kids. I have found that if I tell the children to circle the sign either plus or minus they tend to look at it more and remember to do what the sign tells them. Another thing is to have them do all the addition facts first and then go back and do all the subtraction facts. Hopes that helps.



answers from Buffalo on

Make him circle the sign before he does each problem and say it out loud and make the sign with his hand. If you activate his verbal visual or physical intelligence, it should click. I am a teacher and although I don't teach math, it works in my classroom and at home with my 11 yearold who has learning disabilities.

Good luck and God bless.



answers from New York on

You can also sit down with him and read each equation out load.

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