Exploring numbers early gives your toddler a great headstart
Your baby will love you even more for honing his/her numerical skills without taking the fun away. Bear in mind that babies have minds that work like sponges but with the attention span of a fish. To make learning a happy experience, you capture their attention long enough to instill the seeds of learning.
Math is a skill that starts out very early in childhood. There are many concepts that toddlers can grasp about math. Some, you may not even recognize as math. But these skills are often developed as play. So, the appropriate books here can help your toddler build up those math skills. Take advantage of this opportunity to help them learn the basics of math.
Pre-K is a great age to begin the lessons of number recognition and counting. Like all math skills, you do have to start at the beginning. Practice counting a few of the same items at first. Like many math skills, practice and repetitionare the building blocks. While you can eventually move on to higher numbers, you shouldn't expect them always to remember the order that the numbers go in.
Shape recognition is another part of math that toddlers can explore. This is accomplished by explaining the differences and through the play of inserting shapes into the proper holes. It is easy to incorporate this into the every day as you can point out objects through the day and name the shapes. It is also something that they will explore in more depth in preschool.
Patterns are another thing that you can start discovering with your toddler. Keep the patterns very simple at first. You can ask or show them what comes next in the sequence. As they develop their skills, you can add a third color or shape. The key is not to overcomplicate your patterns. If at all possible, only make one change in the sequence such as alter the color of an item or the shape of an object. Wait until they get the concept down before trying more complex changes.
Size is another math concept that you can explore with your toddler. The idea that things are different sizes is the introduction to the most complicated world of measurements. At this age, you should put emphasis on comparing objectsand pointing out which one is different. You can also concentrate on establishing an order of sizes. How big something is might be a little over their heads at this point, because they are still basically comparing everything to themselves.
There are many math skills that toddlers can build through play. These skills are the base for more complex math skills later on. While you might not be able to help your teenager with their algebra, you can help your toddler learn the basics of numbers.