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## Why Number Sense Is Important For Math Mastery

Mathematics is an essential part of our lives, and it plays a crucial role in almost everything we do, from calculating the number of calories in our meals to managing complex financial transactions. It has proven to be an essential skill in the workforce, with many jobs requiring a solid foundation in mathematics. Thus, the importance of math mastery cannot be overstated for children as they go through school. However, math mastery goes beyond merely memorizing formulas, equations, and algorithms to solving problems.

## A Crucial Aspect Of Math

One crucial aspect of math mastery is number sense. Number sense refers to an intuitive understanding of numbers, their relationships, and how they behave. It involves the ability to estimate, compare, and reason about numbers in a flexible, accurate, and efficient way. Essentially, it is the foundation that allows us to develop a deep understanding of mathematical concepts.

At its core, number sense is about understanding what numbers mean and how they can be manipulated. For example, consider the number 7. Intuitively, we know that it is one more than 6 and one less than 8. We can also identify 7 as a part of different number sets, such as the odd numbers, prime numbers, or numbers that fall between 5 and 10. This is the kind of understanding that number sense cultivates.

## Requiring A Strong Understanding

As students progress through their mathematical studies, they will encounter increasingly complex concepts and problems that require a strong foundation in number sense. Consider, for instance, the process of long division. Though it can be memorized as an algorithm, students who have developed strong number sense can see the relationships between the numbers in a division problem and the process of dividing them. This allows them to perform the calculations more efficiently and with less chance of making mistakes.

When a child truly understands number sense, they will no longer simply memorize math concepts, but they will have a deeper understanding of how they work and how to apply them in real-life situations.

## Developing Number Sense

Developing number sense has several practical benefits beyond mathematical applications. For instance, research has shown that children who develop better number sense early on are more likely to succeed academically, with better outcomes seen in subjects like reading and science. Additionally, people with strong number sense exhibit higher financial literacy and better decision-making skills, with the ability to assess risks and make informed purchases.

So, why is number sense essential for math mastery? There are several reasons, including:

• Facilitates Understanding of Mathematical Concepts

Number sense is the foundation for developing an understanding of mathematical concepts. Concepts such as place value, fractions, and decimals cannot be understood fully without a solid grasp of number sense. Without this foundation, students may end up memorizing procedures without understanding why they work, making it challenging to retain the concepts in the long term.

• Encourages Flexibility in Problem-Solving

Number sense allows for more flexibility in approaching a problem. For instance, consider the problem 99 x 6. A student with a strong number sense might recognize that 99 x 6 is the same as 100 x 6 – 6. This mental shortcut is quicker than performing the calculations using long multiplication and demonstrates a flexible approach to problem-solving.

• Reduces Errors in Calculation

Having a good understanding of number sense allows students to check their work with more accuracy, reducing errors in calculation. For example, students will be able to estimate the answer to the problem before performing the calculations, making it easier to catch mistakes before they become a problem.

• Improves Confidence in Math Abilities

A student with a strong foundation in number sense will be more confident in their math abilities. Mathematics can be intimidating, and many students struggle with self-doubt and anxiety when approaching challenging problems. A strong number sense foundation can give students the confidence they need to tackle new concepts and succeed in the field.

This last step is a big one for us here at Dropkick Math Academy. Many parents come to our Academy because they are at a loss when it comes to helping their child in mathematics. Helping a child who is struggling with math can often be a daunting task, and one that many parents shy away from.

This is where we step in. We understand that math can be difficult to learn, especially if a child has lost confidence or struggles with conventional learning practices. Parents want the best for their children, but their math anxiety can prevent them from being able to help their children when they need it most.

At Dropkick Math Academy, we involve the parent and child and encourage learning together. Research shows that parents who take an active role in their child’s education are much more likely to see a change in attuite and determination in their child’s subject where they were previously struggling.

We make learning fun and engaging and fill in any learning gaps that the child and parent may have. By focusing on the four pillars of math (number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, and proportional reasoning), we can help to ensure to get to the root of the cause of the misunderstanding. By ensuring comprehension of the fundamentals of mathematics, your child will begin to master math right before your eyes.

## Does Your Child Have Number Sense?

As children get older and start learning more complex mathematical concepts and principles, they will be likely to say they “don’t get it,” or that it “doesn’t make sense.” If this sounds familiar, then your child may be missing number sense.

If this problem continues, a child can increasingly feel lost as they move up through the school grades. Year after year, the gap in learning will grow between what they are being taught and what they truly understand. When older children lack number sense, they need to work harder and longer than they should have to solve math problems. This is a significant reason why so many children may need math tutoring.

## A Tremendous Benefit

Number sense is a vital component of math mastery, and at Dropkick Math, we ensure your child has a fundamental understanding of it. Fully understanding numbers sense goes beyond mere memorization of formulas and procedures and instead focuses on the development of a deep intuitive understanding of numbers and their behaviours.

Students who develop strong number sense will benefit tremendously in their math studies, leading to improved academic outcomes and better decision-making abilities in life. Building strong number sense foundations is ultimately critical to success in mathematics and beyond.

Unfortunately, the pandemic caused many students to have a loss in learning over the past couple of years, so it is imperative that children get the help they need before it becomes a bigger problem.

Click to learn more about our math tutoring programs and how we can help get your child back on track while boosting their confidence in math!

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## 3 Strategies For Teaching Number Sense To Children

Teaching young children number sense is essential when it comes to helping them develop a strong foundation in math. As an adult, you might take for granted the years of practice and repetition that enabled your current mastery of numbers – but for kids just starting out on their journey towards math literacy, a solid understanding of ‘number sense’ techniques can provide major breakthroughs. After all, knowing how to compare quantities, recognize patterns and make predictions is required before we can even begin problem-solving! In this blog post, we’ll be exploring three key strategies for getting your little ones on the fast track toward becoming confident mathematicians and offer some guidance for math tutoring choices if needed.

## Everyday Life

Children are exposed to many mathematical concepts in their everyday life from an early age without even realizing it. From picking the biggest piece of cake at a birthday party to understanding the basis of addition when they ask for one more story at bedtime, kids grasp number sense and form concrete understandings of mathematical ideas.

To help them make those connections even deeper, parents and caregivers can provide engaging activities and incorporate creative methods such as using manipulatives or games. That way, number sense will become second nature to young kids so that they will have solid foundations upon which more complex mathematics can be built by the time they enter school.

## Look For Math Around You

One of the best ways to help children learn number sense is by sharing examples of how numbers appear in everyday life and activities. Through simple activities such as counting out snacks when packing lunch or comparing prices at the store, parents and teachers encourage students to see numbers as a practical tool rather than a number being some abstract concept or boring syllabus. Through your own examples, illustrating how number sense helps them make decisions and navigate life, you can create a connection that motivates your child and helps them understand why it’s so essential to have number sense. Once kids recognize number sense’s real-world relevance, they are far more open to learning about math.

Acknowledging children when they are applying mathematical concepts to their daily lives can be a great way to get them excited about math. Whether it’s as simple as counting or comparing sizes, kids can see how applicable it is in their world. If you notice your child solving problems with numbers, articulate that to them by saying something like, “You sure know a lot about numbers!” or “You’re comparing lengths. That’s amazing math!” Show kids that math is relevant and fun, and that alone will build up their self-confidence and help them view themselves as mathematicians.

## Focus On The Process

Practicing counting is a cornerstone learning activity and can help kids learn one-to-one correspondence – or matching each object to the numbers being said. For optimal learning, allow kids to work independently. Give them large groups of objects and let them practice their counting skills in a self-guided environment. This helps build confidence while they are learning this important concept.

Working with addition and subtraction can be challenging for young children, but introducing math manipulatives can make the learning process easier. Manipulatives are concrete objects such as counting cubes or linking blocks that can help solve basic addition and subtraction problems. Allowing your child to explore and experiment with these objects provides a hands-on way to learn and understand mathematical concepts. Encouraging your child to discuss how they came up with their answers ties in language development and helps them strengthen their problem-solving skills – it also gives them an opportunity to vocalize their thought process so that they have a better understanding of what they’re doing.

Improving mathematics understanding also begins with double-checking answers. Asking children to double-check their work allows them to learn from their mistakes and is a valuable teaching tool in improving number sense. Having the chance to go over and spot mistakes on their own encourages mathematics comprehension in the long run, effectively arming them with problem-solving skills they will use throughout life. Finding their own errors gives children more confidence when learning mathematics, ultimately aiding their education and understanding of numbers.

## Developing Math Practice

Starting young is essential to developing mathematics skills that can be used throughout life. Number sense is crucial in building skills, as it helps with understanding problems and problem-solving. Creating practice habits is also important to reinforcing mathematics experience, such as checking one’s work. Children need to be taught to ask themselves questions when interacting with the mathematics curriculum, which can help them learn and create a deeper understanding of mathematics.

Constructing viable arguments and critiquing the reasoning of others is a vital math practice for children to develop. This requires them to explain their math thinking and analyze strategies used by their peers. Such a process helps kids recognize that math problems are not just about getting the correct answer but understanding the procedures used in getting to that solution. Utilizing multiple approaches encourages flexible math problem-solving, allowing children to dig deeper into math concepts while also gaining more number sense. Ultimately, this demonstrates the power of math communication on learning and encourages critical thinking in math situations.

## A Mathematical Journey

Having number sense is an essential component for children to be able to progress along their mathematical journey throughout school. Without number sense, or number and operations fluency, kids may struggle with basic math operations and numerical relationships that are expected of them as they move from one grade to the next. Further difficulty may be encountered when a child needs to form abstract math concepts using the number facts that number sense provides. If a child does not possess number sense, interventions should be conducted in order to help rectify this disadvantage for their longer-term progress in mathematics.

Math tutoring is one of the best ways to help children struggling with number sense. At Dropkick Math Academy, we include number sense as one of the four pillars of math, which all programs are designed around. Children will learn the fundamentals of mathematics, including number sense, and practice them in a fun and engaging way.

Our math tutoring programs are taught by certified Ontario teachers who understand the importance of children learning the root of mathematics. Number sense can be taught at home through our helpful tips above, but if your child is still struggling, it may be time to reach out to trained instructors who can identify where your child may be behind and help them catch up to their peers.

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## How To Know If Your Child Has Number Sense

Knowing if your child has number sense is something every parent/guardian should be concerned about. In this blog post, we will discuss the signs that indicate good number sense. We will also look at how math tutoring can help those with a gap in learning.

## A Daunting Concept

We all want our children to grow up well-rounded and equipped with knowledge, but some skills seem more elusive than others. This can be especially true when it comes to math; while you may know the basics of teaching addition and subtraction, do you really understand how your child is grasping the concepts of number sense?

As daunting as the concept might be, understanding number sense is an essential part of setting your child up for academic success – so let’s take a look at what it means to have number sense and how we can help our kids develop it!

## What Is Number Sense?

Have you ever encountered situations where your children are solving math problems in their heads, and the answer just seems to pop right out? If so, then it’s likely that they have what is known as number sense – a concept which has become increasingly important for parents to recognize.

Plain and simple, number sense is a person’s ability to understand, relate, and connect numbers. It is the sense of what numbers mean. It is an important skill for mathematical learning and competent number problem-solving. It includes the ability to understand number relationships, magnitude, and number representation. Number sense is a building block for later number skills like addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

## How To Tell?

At this point, you may be asking yourself, how do I know if my child has number sense? First, children with trouble with number sense often show signs at an early age. These children will typically tend to struggle with basic operations such as addition and subtraction. They may also exhibit trouble with everyday tasks such as handling money, judging time and measuring quantities.

As children get older and start learning more complex mathematical concepts and principles, they will be likely to say they “don’t get it,” or that it “doesn’t make sense.” If this sounds familiar, then your child may be missing number sense.

If this problem continues, a child can increasingly feel lost as they move up through the school grades. Year after year, the gap in learning will grow between what they are being taught and what they truly understand. When older children lack number sense, they need to work harder and longer than they should have to solve math problems. This is a significant reason why so many children may need math tutoring.

## How Can I Teach My Child Number Sense?

If your child has a learning gap and is missing number sense, you are most likely wondering how you can help. There are many things that parents/guardians can do to help their children

According to research, number sense can be developed by providing meaningful activities that allow children to explore number concepts in different engaging ways. At Dropkick Math Academy, we believe that the development of number sense depends on fostering active engagement in number experiences from an early age that promotes the ability to think flexibly about numbers in various contexts.

Teaching number sense to a child involves presenting numbers in a way the child can understand, providing opportunities for number exploration, and guiding their discovery of number relationships. With guided instruction, children can connect number symbols with quantity, associate numbers with specific patterns, recognize numerical sequences and work on basic number problems.

Fun activities like counting objects out loud or matching numerals to daily activities help children learn number sense quickly. Math manipulatives can be a great tool to help children learn about number sense.

Engaging with stories about counting or singing number songs can also be inexpensive and entertaining ways to teach number sense to a child. With patience, dedication and encouragement from parents or teachers, any child can develop their number sense faster.

## Getting Help From A Professional

In addition to learning at home, many children will need extra help from a professional. At Dropkick Math Academy, we use certified Ontario teachers to ensure our students receive the best quality of math tutoring available. Our certified teachers understand how to teach children at every level and can provide customized strategies tailored to every student’s needs.

Our tutors are dedicated employees with a proven track record of success in the education field and strive for excellence in all aspects of tutoring – from advising students on the techniques needed to understand complex math problems to helping them understand and reshape their approach to problem-solving. Our certified Ontario teachers are the glue that binds our program together!

## Getting The Help They Need

As children begin to learn math, it is vital for them to improve their skills and practice number sense so it does not last into adulthood. Unfortunately, the pandemic caused many students to have a loss in learning over the past couple of years, so it is imperative that children get the help they need before it becomes a bigger problem.

At Dropkick Math Academy, our programs focus on the four pillars of math (number sense, operational sense, proportional reasoning, algebraic reasoning), which help to ensure a child’s knowledge of mathematics starts at the root.

Click to learn more about our programs and how we can help get your child back on track while boosting their confidence in math!

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## Number Sense The Deep Understanding of HOW Numbers Work

If you’ve ever wanted to take an in-depth dive into understanding numbers, then learning about “number sense” is the perfect way to do it. With a focus on developing your own understanding of how numbers work and relate to each other, number sense is not just a key math concept that helps improve mathematical proficiency—it also provides insight into teaching practices and can help unlock deeper levels of problem-solving. This can be invaluable when helping your child learn mathematics.

Through this blog post, we aim to provide you with both an introduction and a deep exploration of what number sense really means so you can develop your skills around working with numbers efficiently and effectively. At Dropkick Math Academy, our math tutoring services offer programs focused on understanding number sense, and we include the parent/guardian. So, if you are interested in learning with your child, check out our math tutoring programs today!

## Understanding Number Sense

Having number sense is an important skill for students to have in order to become competent in math. Number sense involves understanding the number of items in a certain set and being able to interpret that number without actually counting all of the items. It also involves understanding number quantity, comparing and organizing numbers, simple calculations, recognizing mathematical patterns, and problem-solving.

Students who have strong number sense can quickly solve problems because they understand relationships among quantities and operations without laborious number-crunching. It provides them a deeper level of math intuition which is essential for success with more advanced topics like algebra, calculus, geometry and beyond.

## Explaining Number Sense To Your Child

Explaining number sense to a child can be an important part of helping them understand math. To help explain number sense, start by having your child identify the number of items in a group. It could be as simple as counting the number of chairs in the room or counting their fingers. Once they have identified the number, ask questions such as “If I gave you two more chairs, how many would there be?” This helps develop an understanding of addition and subtraction as well as number recognition.

Providing hands-on activities that involve moving objects like coins, or math manipulatives can help them visualize what different numbers look like. Doing this can give them a better foundation for developing number sense in other areas such as basic operations and fractions.

## Number Sense Throughout School

Number sense is important for elementary students to understand and grow with. This can range from counting, number properties and operations, number patterns and relationships, estimation, number comparisons, fractions, and more over the various grades. As they progress through to grades 4 to 9 they learn to extend their understanding of whole numbers to rational numbers such as decimals, percentages and rational fractions, as well as irrational numbers.

Number sense is only going to become increasingly important in our rapidly evolving world, where mathematical knowledge is vital for success. It is, therefore important for young learners to develop a strong number sense foundation early on.

## The Importance Of Number Sense

Research has recently found that many students struggle with learning math because they don’t have the underlying foundation of what the numbers really mean. Without having a deep understanding of what number sense means, they do not have the basic foundational skills and will most likely struggle in the future. However, at Dropkick Math Academy, teachers are changing the way mathematics is taught and focusing more on mastering number sense and the automaticity of facts.

## Working With Parents And Students

At Dropkick Math, we understand where a student’s understanding of number sense should be. Using concrete and pictorial models and interactive guides, we can help students understand the “howmuchness” of various numbers. We take the time to work with students and their parents walking them through experiences that allow them to interpret symbolic representations of numbers.

Teaching number sense to parents alongside their children can be an invaluable part of helping them understand their student’s homework. Number sense concepts help students make number-based decisions quickly, which can be a great tool for both students and their caregivers. It includes understanding number relationships, mental calculations, and estimation, all of which can help parents more effectively guide their children throughout the learning process. Teaching number sense also allows parents to talk with their kids about the math they are working on and better understand how it relates to everyday life.

## The Four Pillars Of Math

Strong number sense can help build a foundation for mathematical understanding as one of the four pillars of math. Number sense, especially in the younger grades, can help build the foundation necessary to compute and solve more complex problems as they go into older grades.

At Dropkick Math Academy, our programs focus on math’s four pillars.  By mastering these four fundamental concepts,  students will be able to solve any problem they encounter in math. In addition, the four pillars of math provide a strong foundation for students to build upon as they move on to higher grades. By the end of each module, students have a well-rounded foundation in arithmetic and are prepared to move on to more advanced modules.

## Signs Of Trouble

Children who have trouble with number sense often show signs at an early age. Unfortunately, the pandemic caused many students to have a loss in learning over the past couple of years. Students in the younger grades have suffered a gap in mathematics as they learn number sense. As one of the four pillars of math, not understanding number sense may leave a child with a weak math pillar and can significantly impact their future math success.

At Dropkick Math Academy, we offer math tutoring that focuses on the four pillars, which get to the root of students’ misunderstandings. Instead of covering up math misunderstandings, we work from the ground up to help foster a full comprehension of number sense.

Learn more about the four pillars today and how we incorporate them into your various math tutoring programs. Your child will not only learn the math they need, but they will have fun doing it! With game-based learning, our students are eager to attend classes and stay engaged throughout the lesson. Click to learn more today!

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## How Learning Fractions Can Show A Strong Understanding Of Number Sense

We all know that fractions are a big part of mathematics, but how many of us really understand why? In this blog post, we’ll explore what fractions represent and how mastering them can show a strong understanding of number sense. We’ll also take a look at our programs for helping kids learn fractions in a way that makes sense to them. So read on if you are looking to help kids with their fraction skills or simply want to understand this important mathematics concept better!

## Fractions Can Be Scary!

Fractions can often seem like a daunting concept, especially at a young age when fractions are first introduced. However, fractions are actually just a way to represent parts of a whole or ratio between two quantities. When broken down into smaller steps, fractions become much easier to work with and understand.

First, it is important to have a solid understanding of basic arithmetic operations such as addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division. From there, fractions can be thought of as “special” divisions where the bottom number represents the total number of equal parts the whole has been divided into, and the top number represents how many of those parts we are dealing with.

Understanding fractions is essential in further studying mathematics and real-world applications such as cooking measurements and financial budgets. Don’t let fractions deflate your child’s confidence – with some practice, they can become just another tool in their mathematical toolkit.

## Math Builds Upon Itself

If your child seems to enjoy learning fractions and grasping the concepts, they will most likely have a strong understanding of number sense. However, if they are struggling to understand the concept of fractions, they may need to take a step back and revisit number sense.

Many assume that math is a subject where individual concepts can be easily isolated and learned without prior knowledge. However, this assumption ignores the fact that much of math builds upon itself – number sense, for example, is crucial for understanding fractions. The intuitive understanding of numbers and their relationships lays the foundation for learning about fractions and how to manipulate them. Without this foundation, it can be difficult for a student to grasp the concept of a fraction and how it relates to whole numbers.

It is important for educators not only to identify and address gaps in a student’s number sense understanding but also to consistently reinforce these basic skills throughout all levels of math education. A student may struggle with more advanced mathematical concepts without number sense as the foundational basis.

At Dropkick Math Academy, our programs are focused around the four pillars of math (number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, and proportional reasoning). This allows our teachers to ensure every child understands the root of all math operations.

## What Is Number Sense?

As we mentioned, if your child is struggling with fractions, they are most likely experiencing a gap in learning in number sense. But what exactly is number sense?

Number sense is understanding the quantity represented by a number. It is not the same as numeracy, which is the ability to do calculations. Number sense develops gradually. For example, a baby starts by recognizing that they see one person or two people. By the time they start school, they can count up to 20 or more. They learn what numbers mean in terms of amounts and quantities. This knowledge forms the foundation for learning more complex math concepts later on.

## Understanding Fractions

Research has shown that children build on their number sense by learning connections among whole numbers, percentages, decimals, and fractions. This can ultimately deepen their understanding of ratio and proportionality.

An extensive study from The College Student Achievement Project found that understanding fractions is one of the most critical skills needed for college mathematics in both technology and business. However, it was noted that fractions are one of the main areas where students lacked the necessary understanding. This shows a significant gap in learning and missed opportunities for students in their math education.

## Dropkick Math Fraction Programs

Learning fractions and number sense go hand in hand, which is why we offer programs like Fractions & Knights of the Whole Table. This program centers around improving a child’s number sense and proportional reasoning skills with fractions.

We understand that fractions are one of the greatest barriers to math success and one of children’s leading causes of math anxiety. Our goal is to improve your child’s understanding, skills and confidence when using fractions. By giving them the confidence they need to battle the knights and sorcerers, they can overcome the stress of learning mathematics.

Once your child masters the basics of fractions, they can move on to the next program, Becoming A Fraction Hero with Operations. Here, they will work specifically with adding and subtracting fractions with like and unlike denominators. They will also work with multiplying and dividing fractions with whole numbers.

With the help of heroes like Captain Struggle, your child will master the four pillars (number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, proportional reasoning) using fractions all the way along. In this program, turning your child’s uncertainty into confidence will save the world and make homework struggles a thing of the past!

## We Take Fractions Seriously!

As you can tell, we take learning fractions seriously! We want all children to succeed in mathematics and understand that the four pillars of math are at the root of understanding all math concepts. All of our programs address gaps in learning in these four pillars to ensure a child’s success as they learn future equations.

One of the key ways to achieve success is to give your children a strong foundation in education. In our math help services, our certified Ontario teachers will work with your child to ensure they understand math concepts and don’t just memorize one way of accomplishing them.

All of our programs are virtual, and we have new classes starting regularly. Learn more about our math tutoring services today by visiting our website

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## Why Is Number Sense Important In Early Childhood Education

The construct of number sense refers to a child’s fluidity and flexibility with numbers. It helps children understand what numbers mean, improves their mental mathematics performance, and gives them the tools to look at math in the outside world and make comparisons. In short, number sense is essential for developing a foundation in mathematics that will last a lifetime.

## Why Number Sense Is So Important

Number sense is critical for mathematical success for several reasons. First, it is difficult for students to understand what numbers mean without number sense. They may be able to recite numerals and count objects, but they cannot fully grasp the magnitude or quantity of those numbers. Second, students who lack number sense often have difficulty with mental mathematics. This includes recalling addition and subtraction facts, estimating answers to problems, and solving word problems. Finally, students need number sense in order to make connections between mathematics and the world around them. For example, they need to be able to use mathematics to measure objects, compare quantities, and understand Venn diagrams.

## Problem Solving Skills

One of the most important reasons for understanding number sense is for children to acquire problem-solving skills. When children can work flexibly with numbers, they can solve problems both inside and outside of the classroom. For example, if your child knows that 10 + 4 = 14, they will be able to quickly solve the problem 10 + 7 = __ by adding 3 to the known sum of 10 + 4. This type of flexible thinking is an important problem-solving skill that will serve your child well both now and in the future.

## What Can You Do To Help?

You can do many things as a parent to help your child develop strong number sense skills. One of the best things you can do is give your child frequent opportunities to practice counting and performing simple addition and subtraction problems. You can incorporate math into everyday activities such as cooking, baking, shopping, and even laundry!

You can help track your child’s number sense progress by checking for the following:

1. An awareness of the relationship between number and quantity
2. An understanding of number symbols, vocabulary, and meaning
3. The ability to engage in systematic counting
4. Competence with simple mathematical operations
5. An awareness of number patterns, including recognizing missing numbers

## What Poor Number Sense Looks Like

As an elementary school teacher, I often had parents proudly tell me their child could count to 50. They were right – the child could recite the number names from one to 50. Impressive? Yes! But meaningful? No.

The ability for a child to recite numbers in order is only one level of oral counting. It doesn’t necessarily mean they understand number sense. Unless a child has learned the basic building blocks early on, they will struggle to understand math concepts later on, such as fractions and decimals.

Children with poor number sense tend to rely on methods they feel secure with and will focus on procedure. They often apply immature strategies to calculations and fail to spot links and connections that could help them get to the answer more quickly and easily.

Those with poor number sense may also prefer to use pen and paper rather than working things out in their heads. They may be reluctant to estimate an answer before working it out and may accept whatever answer they get without questioning whether it is reasonable. Ironically children with poor number sense often do a more challenging version of math that relies upon remembering and applying procedures, with little understanding of underlying math concepts.

## Setting Up For Success!

Number sense is a critical foundation skill for success in mathematics and problem-solving. As a parent, there are many things that you can do to support your child in developing strong number sense skills, such as providing opportunities for practice and talking about numbers regularly throughout the day. By taking some time to focus on developing strong number sense skills with your child, you will be setting them up for success both inside and outside the classroom!

At Dropkick Math Academy, we include number sense as one of the four pillars of math that our curriculum is based around. As children improve their abilities with the four math pillars, they will strengthen their sense of place value and proportional reasoning skills. With our support in learning the building blocks of mathematics, your child will begin to thrive.

If you have been searching for “math tutor near me,” look no further. Our fun, educational learning style will help boost your child’s confidence in math and set them up for mathematical success for years to come!

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## What Are The Four Pillars Of Math?

The Four Pillars of Math are four concepts that are essential for students to understand in order to be successful in math. These pillars are: number sense, operational sense, proportional reasoning, and algebraic reasoning. By mastering these four fundamental concepts,  students will be able to solve any problem they encounter in math. In addition, the four pillars of math provide a strong foundation for students to build upon as they move on to more advanced concepts.

## The Foundation Of Our Program

At Dropkick Math Academy, the foundation of our math tutoring program focuses on the four pillars of math. These four pillars are essential building blocks for understanding higher-level math concepts. We focus on one or more of these pillars throughout our program in each module. For example, in our first module, Operations, Whole Numbers, and Pirates, we focus heavily on developing a conceptual understanding of both number and operational sense. Without a strong understanding of these operations, it would be impossible to move on to more complex topics like algebra. However, we also touch on the other three pillars in this module. For instance, we use proportional reasoning to explore place value. By the end of the module, students have a well-rounded foundation in arithmetic and are prepared to move on to more advanced modules.

## The Four Pillars Of Math

Let’s take a closer look at each of the four pillars:

Number Sense

Number sense is understanding the quantity represented by a number. It is not the same as numeracy, which is the ability to do calculations. Number sense develops gradually. For example, a baby starts by recognizing that they see one person or two people. By the time they start school, they can count up to 20 or more. They learn what numbers mean in terms of amounts and quantities. This knowledge forms the foundation for learning more complex math concepts later on.

Fractions are an excellent example of a concept that builds on number sense. In order to understand fractions, students need to be able to visualize the quantity represented by a number. For example, if there are four pieces of candy and I eat two of them, then I have eaten half of the candy. Fractions are a way of representing numbers that are not whole numbers, and understanding fractions requires a strong foundation in number sense.

Operational Sense

Operational sense is a critical math concept that refers to a child’s ability to make sense of addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division and use them in problem-solving situations. When a child is able to develop a strong understanding of the operations, they can recognize the relationships among them and develop systems for computing numbers. This understanding helps to form the basis for the four pillars of math.

Operational sense is not just about being able to do the computations but about understanding when and how to use them. For example, a child who knows that addition can be used to find out how many objects are in a group but does not understand that it can also be used to put together two groups of objects has not yet developed operational sense. Operational sense is a critical foundation for success in math, and children who develop a strong understanding of the operations are well on their way to becoming math problem-solvers.

Proportional Reasoning

Proportional reasoning is a unifying theme in mathematics and is often considered the foundation of abstract mathematical understanding. All four pillars connect to proportional reasoning. For example, in whole numbers, students learn about place value which is based on 10s. In decimals, place value is based on 10s with an added number after the decimal point. In fractions, there are different parts of a whole, and students use visual representations to help understand the relationships between those parts. Lastly, in percentages, there are hundredths and relationships are represented out of 100.

By making connections to prior learning, students see that proportional reasoning is everywhere in mathematics! Proportional reasoning is not just a process but rather it’s a way of looking at the world and solving problems. In essence, proportional reasoning is the consideration of numbers in relative terms compared to absolute terms.

Algebraic Reasoning

Patterns are all around us. They can be found in the seasons, the way leaves grow on a tree, and the numbers we use every day. Understanding patterns is an essential mathematical skill that helps us to make sense of the world around us.

Algebraic reasoning is a way of thinking that uses mathematics to solve problems and understand relationships. It is an essential skill that is introduced in the early years of learning and continues to play an increasingly important role through grades 4 to 9.

Algebraic reasoning can be used to solve problems in a variety of ways, including by using algebraic equations, graphing, and creating tables and charts. It is a powerful tool that can help us to understand complex ideas and make predictions about the future. By understanding algebraic reasoning, we can better understand the world around us and our place within it.

## Learning Skills

The approach used in Dropkick Math Academy teaches children certain skills along with the four pillars to set them up for success in their future education. These include:

Concepts – Concepts are the building blocks of math. If students don’t understand the basic concepts, they’ll struggle to progress. That’s why we focus on teaching concepts in a way that is clear and easy to understand. We want students to really grasp the material so they can build on it later.

Fluency – Fluency is about being able to do math accurately. It’s important for students to be able to recall math facts and equations quickly so they can focus on solving problems. We use a variety of techniques to help students improve their fluency, including games and practice with real-world applications.

Problem-solving – Problem-solving is an essential skill for all students, not just those interested in math or science. Breaking down a problem and finding a solution is a valuable life skill that will serve students well no matter what path they choose. We encourage students to approach problem-solving with confidence and to persevere when they find themselves stuck.

## Mastering The Four Pillars

The Dropkick Math team is committed to helping students master the Four Pillars of Math. We believe that this is the best way to set students up for success in their math education. We have created a variety of resources, such as articles, videos, and games, that all focus on helping students understand and master these four concepts and better understand math operations. Visit our website today to start exploring these resources and learn more about our math help services. By taking our FREE assessment, your child can begin to build a strong foundation in math!

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# What Is Number Sense? A Guide For Parents

Plain and simple, number sense is a person’s ability to understand, relate, and connect numbers. It is the sense of what numbers mean.

What value does a number represent? Which number is bigger or smaller? Children with the ability to answer these questions have a firm grasp on number sense. They can perform mental mathematics and look at the world and make comparisons.

Number sense is a group of skills that allows people to work with numbers in math and many other tasks. Students who have a strong understanding of number sense can represent quantities using diagrams and materials explaining how they get the quantity of numbers.They should also be able to decompose and compose number fluently. These children also understand the base 10 relationships in the number system and can compare whole numbers with decimal numbers, considering the value of the numbers. They will be able to visualize and talk about numbers comfortably and solve math problems in their head without the use of a pencil and paper.

Over the past few decades, teachers have solely concentrated on math facts and calculations, not about the number themselves. However, educators have now found that students may struggle with learning math because they don’t have the underlying foundation of what the numbers really mean. Their lack of understanding of number sense means they do not have the basic foundational skills and will struggle in the future. But, with this new information, teachers are changing the way mathematics is being taught, and focusing more time on mastering number sense and automaticity of facts.

## Create A Relationship With Numbers

Number sense is essential for elementary school children because it can promote confidence and encourages flexible thinking. It can allow a child to create a relationship with numbers, so they are able to talk about math concepts as a language.

Strong number sense can help build a foundation for mathematical understanding as one of the four pillars of math. Number sense, especially in the younger grades, can help build the foundation necessary to compute and solve more complex problems as they go into older grades.

In grades 4 to 9, children extend their understanding of whole numbers to rational numbers and are introduced to irrational numbers. Without a solid foundation of this education in early years, students may struggle as math problems become more complex.

## Signs At An Early Age

Children who have trouble with number sense often show signs at an early age. Students that struggle with math typically don’t have a good sense of numbers. As one of the foundational concepts that holds them back from becoming fluid in math, children may struggle with basic operations such as addition and multiplication. They can also have trouble with everyday tasks and skills such as handling money, measuring, and judging time.

As children begin to learn math, it is vital for them to improve their skills and practice number sense, so it does not last into adulthood. Unfortunately, the pandemic caused many students to have a loss in learning over the past couple of years. Students in the younger grades have suffered a gap in mathematics as they learn number sense. As one of the four pillars of math, not understanding number sense will leave a child with a weak math pillar and can significantly impact their future math success.

## Fundamentals In the Four Pillars

At Dropkick Math, we understand children need to encounter math in everyday life to help develop their fundamentals in the four pillars of math. Our programs focus on number sense, operational sense, algebraic reasoning, and proportional reasoning. Our math help services provide personalized number sense programs while pinpointing their individual math needs. These programs are beneficial to children because they offer an interactive learning service that provides clear goals and measurement tools to keep track of your child’s progress.

Our fun and engaging learning environment creates a math playground that can help your child build on their math skills and gain the confidence they need to excel in mathematics. Learn more about our programs today!