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Communicating with Children Using Math Language
Talking About Math:
Talking about mathematics with your child – whatever his or her age – helps strengthen his or her mathematical reasoning and understanding. Some ways to keep the talk engaged and focused while you support your child include:
- Revoice - Repeat what you heard your child say, then ask for clarification (e.g., “So you are saying it’s an odd number?”).
- Repeat/Restate – Ask your child to restate your reasoning (e.g., “Can you repeat what I said in your own words?”).
- Reason – Ask your child to apply his or her own reasoning to someone else’s reasoning (e.g., “Do you agree or disagree? Tell me why.”).
- Adding On – Prompt your child to participate further (e.g., “What more would you add to that?”).
- Think Time – Wait several seconds (try five) to give your child time to think (e.g., “Take some time to think.”). You may be surprised by how hard it is to stay silent in that time!