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Connie McCarthy is passionate about her work as a teacher of young children. She has devoted her entire career to making sure that her students do well at school, right from the start. Connie has an undergraduate degree in Elementary Education, and a Master’s Degree in Special Education. She has been teaching first grade in East Providence, R.I. for 23 years, where she received the distinction of “Highly Qualified Teacher” by the Rhode Island State Board of Regents. Connie also taught nursery school for four years, and published numerous articles on early education in East Bay Newspapers in Bristol, R.I. She’s also been published in PTO Today Magazine. She lives with her husband, Brian, and has a daughter and a son, both young adults. Connie enjoys reading, writing about elementary education, and taking long walks with friends. During summer vacations, she likes to travel with her husband. She also loves reading readers’ comments on her weekly blog posts.

Helping Kids Make a Reading and Math Connection

Boy with piggy bankAlthough reading and math are two separate subjects there is a strong connection between the two. Helping your child improve their math vocabulary will in turn help them improve their math comprehension.

Here are three easy suggestions to help improve your young child’s math vocabulary:

  • A number word is one of the first things you can help your child master. On 4x6 index cards write the numerals 0 through 20 on the top of the card. On the bottom of the card, print the number word that belongs to the numeral. For example, "2" on top, and "two" on the bottom. Be sure to use lower case letters. You can then use them for flash cards. When your child can easily say them in order, mix the cards up to increase the difficulty. Cover the numeral at the top with your hand, so that only the number word is visible. Keep practicing until your child can easily recognize the number words.

  • In a small notebook make an "ABC" book using math words. For example, put the word "addition" under letter "A," "equal" under letter "E," or "pennies" under letter "P." Your child can illustrate the page. As he learns new math words add them to the notebook page with the corresponding first letter.

  • Make up simple math/word problems. "If I had nine pennies, but I lost six, how many do I have left?" Or, "Sue gave me three crackers. Mom gave me four more. How many crackers do I have now?" Let your child use actual pennies, crackers, or other household objects to figure out the answers.

A strong reading and math connection will enable your child to have the confidence to solve everyday problems.

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