Bad at Math is a Lie!

    Parent Involvement

    Essential for Success in Mathematics

    Parental support and encouragement are vital to children’s mathematical development and success in school.  Social, economic, or educational status of parents does not have as much an effect on their children’s learning as what parents do with their children.


    All children must have an education that will enable them to function effectively in a world where mathematics is necessary for an ever increasing number of career options.  Job opportunities will require the ability to solve problems, to develop mathematical models, and to apply specific skills to real situations.  Therefore, parents must make clear to their children the relevance and importance of mathematics.


    Parents can take an active role in their children’s success by:

    • Discussing regularly with their children their classroom activities and listening carefully to the explanations of what has been learned.
    • Encouraging their children to persist when the work becomes difficult, and not to expect parents or tutors to provide answers for them.
    • Engaging with their children in appropriate family games, puzzles, and other activities of mathematical skill.
    • Placing an emphasis on the process of working toward a solution rather than just getting the right answer, since the process is a lifetime skill.
    • Being observant of ways in which problem-solving is learned in school and at home.
    • Understanding the purpose of homework (in our class, it is practice for tests much like a musician rehearses hour after hour perfecting their songs before a concert).  Homework also gives the learner feedback on how well she grasps the material.
    A statement from Matt Micek and
    the Mathematical Association of America
    1529 Eighteenth St, NW, Washington, DC  20038
    and the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics