Your child has progressed from kindergarten to first grade. That’s exciting news! There is so much learning to come their way, especially from their first grade math class. Older children are likely preparing for AMC 8 math and all this backs in to a solid learning foundation.

Math skills and concepts build on each other from grade to grade, which is why children need to get a firm foundation so they can handle the more complex challenges as they progress in school.

As a concerned parent, you might be wondering what some of these mathematical concepts will be and, more importantly, how you can help your child master them. You don’t have to figure it out on your own.

Here, we will give you a breakdown of what to expect from your child’s math class. We’ll also add a few tips on how to help your young learner thrive through it all.

Let’s get started!

Why Is Math Important?

Math is taught in the classroom, but that doesn’t mean that’s the only place it’s relevant. We use it every day!

From the hexagonal bee combs to the circles, semi-circles, and crescents of the phases of our moon, mathematics is an essential part of the world we live in, and learning it helps us make sense of everything around us.

Did you know that math skills can also be linked to music? Children who play musical instruments use the same part of the brain when doing math. This is why studies have shown that music students do better in mathematics than their non-musical peers.

Sports and mathematics also have an interesting connection. Just think about all the coordination involved in performing well in certain sports. Research has shown that these skills can also be used to learn math.

In addition, mathematics helps us be stronger logical thinkers. Since most young kids tend to enjoy math time, it’s essential to foster this natural love for the subject just as much as we want to encourage children’s love for reading.

Helping children develop a love for mathematics generally works well when approached actively as a problem-solving skill rather than a rote memory task. Math helps children thrive in various aspects of their lives.

So, how do we get there? It all starts with the foundation.

Below are the key first grade math concepts your child will soon learn and some tips on how you can support them on their journey.

Important First Grade Math Concepts

Numbers And Counting

At first grade level (and for the next few years in school), learning different numbers and counting will form a significant part of your child’s mathematics lessons.

There are different ways to help your child grasp numbers and counting at home, and hands-on activities work best.

An effective strategy is to help your child visualize what all these numbers mean. For example, instead of just memorizing the numbers, they can count bears, large dried beans, or even craft sticks.

2) Addition And Subtraction

In first grade math, your young learner will start adding and subtracting numbers up to 30. They will also solve basic word problems with the help of drawings, objects, and equations.

For instance, you might ask, “If you have two teddy bears and granny buys you three more, how many teddy bears will you have in total?” Or, “There were six strawberries in the fridge. Daddy ate some strawberries. There are now four left. How many did daddy eat?”

3) 2-D Shapes

During pre-k, children get introduced to different shapes. In first grade, they will continue to extend their understanding of them.

To help your child grasp these shapes at home, continue to point out and name the 2-D shapes in the world around you (circles, triangles, pentagons, etc.).

When doing so, remember to always highlight the attributes (e.g., this book has four equal sides, so it’s a square).

4) Sorting And Patterns

Understanding and sorting patterns also forms a part of first grade math.

  • Sort different objects by attributes such as color, shape, and function. For example, sorting a mixed group of blocks so that the red, blue, green, and yellow blocks are separated.
  • In addition, if these blocks are placed in a pattern (e.g., green, yellow, green, yellow, etc.), your child should be able to both predict which color will come next and create their own identical pattern. This skill will help develop your child’s logical thinking.

Continue to allow your young learner to play with fun building blocks and create their own patterns to help them master this skill.