Learning Mathematics Through Literature

more on the topic

The union of the mathematician with the poet, fervor with measure, passion with correctness, this surely is the ideal” – William James, a prominent psychologist and philosopher.

Mathematics is often understood as a challenging subject to learn. Traditional teaching methods and insipid learning models helped exacerbate such a perception. Today, more and more teachers begin to see how children books can actually help students overcome mathematics anxiety, helping them remain interested in learning mathematics.

Studies continue to suggest that children are likely to understand mathematics more when the subject is being presented in a way that is meaningful to them. David Whitin, in his book, titled “Math Is Language Too: Talking and Writing in the Mathematics Classroom,” asserts that;

Through varied opportunities for investigation, these books support readers in developing healthy attitudes and dispositions about mathematical activity.”

Those who are interested to try, the following are guidelines for selecting such books. The book, in essence, must be able to:

  • Connect to your students’ background knowledge.
  • Bridge abstract knowledge to concrete knowledge.
  • Apply new knowledge to real-world situations.

There are many picture books and storybooks out there to choose from, but not all of them are suitable to suit the purpose of enhancing a mathematics lesson. When deciding to get one, remember that story comes first, then mathematics; because the story is what will excite them most in the first place. Here are some of them:

1) Children books that teach counting and adding

2) Children books that teach counting backwards and subtraction

3) Children books that teach measurement

4) Children books that teach about money

Rosamond Welchman-Tischler, in her book, “How to Use Children’s Literature to Teach Mathematics,” suggests ways to enhance students’ learning experiences by using literature to teach mathematics.

The following are her suggestions in key points;

  • Provide a context or model for an activity with mathematical content.
  • Introduce manipulatives that will be used in varied ways (not necessarily as in the story).
  • Inspire a creative mathematics experience for children.
  • Pose an interesting problem.
  • Prepare for a mathematics concept or skill.
  • Develop or explain a mathematics concept or skill.
  • Review a mathematics concept or skill.

Most of the children’s books are very plot-driven; filled with such interesting stories that may sometimes require its readers to solve a mathematical problem or two (i.e. compare numerical amounts or maybe tell time). As parents, what we can do to help is we start reading more books ourselves; fill our home with more books and read to our child as often as possible.

References

  1. Using Children’s Literature to Teach Mathematics
  2. Math Is Language Too: Talking and Writing in the Mathematics Classroom
  3. How Children’s Literature and Math Can Go Hand in Hand
  4. How to Use Children’s Literature to Teach Mathematics
  5. Using Children’s Literature to Teach Mathematics
Learning Mathematics Through Literature

Studies suggest that children are likely to understand mathematics more when the subject is being presented in a way that is meaningful to them. (https://bit.ly/2LqIvcz)

Posted by emakayah.com on Sunday, 14 July 2019

More on this topic

Comments

Leave a Reply

Please Login to comment
avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of

You'll Like This

You Can Now Stream Two New Shows From Sesame Workshop on Apple TV+

In 1969, Sesame Workshop’s founders asked a single bold question. Could television —then an emerging technology—be used to educate kids? With...

Children & Gadgets: The Impact of Electronic Media on Children Development

They Are Not Designed With Children In Mind Technologies, led by the internet play a vital role in...

Popular Early Childhood Education approaches: Exploring Montessori, Waldorf & Reggio Emilia

Montessori, Waldorf, and Reggio Emilia are three major approaches to early childhood education. They're popular not only in the United States...