We all want learning math to be fun for our kids, but teaching math can be fun too. Believe it or not, math doesn’t have to be boring and painful. Math is everywhere, it’s a part of our everyday lives.
There are all kinds of exciting and new ways to teach real-world math to your kids. Instead of approaching math with a traditional curriculum, I’d like to encourage you to help your kids learn to appreciate math by approaching it as a part of their everyday lives. Together, you and your homeschoolers can learn to appreciate math and make it a fun part of your homeschool and family life.
Ways To Teach Real-World Math Without a Curriculum
There are lots of different math curriculums available to homeschoolers, but I’m excited to let you in on a little secret. You can teach homeschool math without a curriculum and have fun doing it too.
I’d like to encourage you to begin by thinking about your own feelings towards math. If you have negative feelings about math, you’ll want to be careful not to send those messages to your homeschoolers.
How can you fall in love with math? By approaching math in a whole new way!
Strewing for Homeschool Math
One successful method for increasing exposure to a variety of math concepts and manipulatives is strewing. What is strewing? Strewing is all about exposing kids to a wide variety of items and resources. Strewing resources your kids can explore at their own pace in a hands-on way is a great first step. Check out some of our favorite tips for strewing success:
Some of our favorite items to strew for math include number fridge magnets, number puzzles, and paint or color by number pictures. Items like these encourage math play and expose kids to numbers at an early age.
If you’d like to try strewing, but unsure where to begin, I’ve got just the thing to help you get started. I’ve put together a complete guide to strewing for you!
Math Books & Toys
Exciting math toys and picture books are a great way to begin introducing young children to math concepts in a fun and engaging way. Check out some of our favorites:
- Math Picture Books for Your Homeschool
- Bedtime Math Series by Laura Overdeck
- Hands-On Manipulatives for Math
We are big fans of gameschooling here at the Waldock Way. Gameschooling is all about learning through gameplay. Playing math games together is a great way to practice math concepts we’re learning and have fun together too.
Sometimes this includes video games and learning apps. Sometimes it’s all about incorporating card games and board games to help homeschoolers learn and practice important concepts. Check out some of our favorite math games to play:
STEM projects and experiments are another cool way to teach math in your homeschool without a curriculum. Project-based learning focuses on teaching kids by engaging them in real-world projects.
You can use building projects to encourage your homeschoolers to practice and master math concepts in an exciting way. Discover how we used LEGO bricks to practice addition, subtraction, and multiplication in our homeschool:
Math in the Kitchen
My favorite way to teach real-world math without a curriculum is in the kitchen. Getting into the kitchen with your homeschoolers is a great way to make memories that will last a lifetime. Plus, it’s the best way to teach fractions.
If you’re not sure where to begin, check out a kids’ culinary subscription box like Raddish Kids or the Veggie Buds Club. These boxes come with age appropriate cooking activities that will teach kids real-world math applications.
Finally, consider paying your kids for chores or tasks at home. It’s an easy way to begin teaching kids about money: what it’s worth, how to count it, and how to budget.
By paying kids a small amount for various chores around the house, you can teach them a lot about the value of a dollar and the importance of budgeting wisely. These are the kinds of real-world homeschool lessons that will last a lifetime!
Homeschool Math: Live It, But Don’t Overdo It
In the end, teaching homeschoolers math without a curriculum isn’t as challenging as it sounds. To make math fun and interesting, don’t teach it. Instead, live it out. Show your kids with real-world examples and activities that math has a place in our everyday lives.
Some of the easiest ways to impart this lesson are by displaying items like clocks and calendars in your home. Teach your kids to read both digital and analog clocks to tell the time. Show them how to use a calendar and have fun creating one to hang on the wall together.
What If I Miss Something Important In Math?
As homeschool moms, we often worry about forgetting to teach our kids something, missing some important concept, or having gaps in their learning. It’s important to remember that everyone has gaps, whether they attended public school, private school, or homeschool.
As teachers and moms, we have to make peace with the gaps our children may have and work to ensure they master the most important material and concepts. By focusing on real-world math activities and lessons, you’ll be ensuring your kids have mastered the math concepts they’ll need every day.
Remember, in homeschooling, there’s no such thing as behind. We can take longer to learn and master concepts our children find challenging or breeze through topics and concepts they master quickly. However, you can always check my free grade-level skills checklists to discover what concepts your kids might need to focus on next.