Does your kid’s concentration vanish just as soon as you crack open their maths book at home? Instead of nagging or offering bribes, it may be worth changing tactics and thinking about the problem at hand. If your kid doesn’t seem to display any major problems taking in numbers, then it might be worth looking into whether self-confidence might be the issue at root.
According to Terri Apter, child psychologist and Ph.D at the University of Cambridge, a lack of motivation, impatience and concentration difficulties are all signs of low self-confidence. If a child doesn’t trust in their own abilities, they will often see no point in trying due to a fear of failing. What’s more, kids with low self-confidence have trouble asking questions – they doubt whether anyone will listen.
So how can you as a parent help to boost your child’s self-confidence?
Good self-confidence stems from good self-esteem, and that is created through love and reassurance. Make sure your kid feels loved every day; lavish them with plenty of hugs and give them your time and undivided attention. Health experts recommend that we dedicate at least 15 minutes each day to our relationships (leave your phone in another room). Be mindful to also show your kid affection in situations where they are just being themselves in order to help them build up a sense of self-esteem which is unrelated to performance.
Children develop at different speeds and you have a huge responsibility as an adult to be adaptable and set expectations which chime with your kid’s stage of development. By teaching your child to overcome challenges which are at just the right level of difficulty, you can help them build confidence in their own abilities, and this in turn will boost their self-confidence.
If adapting your maths practice to your kid’s ever-changing abilities seems like a daunting task, try using Albert. The app increases the level of difficulty in line with your child’s progression so they will constantly feel they are getting better and doing well.
Immersing your kid in play is just as important as adapting their challenges to their abilities. Up to the age of ten, play is one of the most important tools that children have to help them develop and better understand their surroundings. According to health experts, play also lays the foundation for good concentration abilities. If you want your kid to associate maths with something enjoyable, then it’s a good idea to make numbers a part of their play. Play shopkeeper and practise counting coins and giving change, play train conductor and set out the right number of chairs for their stuffed toys or let your kid play their way to knowledge with Albert Junior. The maths exercises on this app have been developed to feel like games, offering heaps of fun and positive reinforcement as kids learn.