Overcoming Math Anxiety
Studies show that up to 30 percent of people report moderate to high levels of math anxiety, according to author Malia Wollan in an article that appeared on March 27, 2022 in the New York Times.
Children as young as 6 can show signs of anxiety about math. Many adults (parent and teachers) make the mistake of telling children they are bad (or good) at math, which can increase the child’s apprehension about math.
One of the reasons students become anxious about math is that math is taught in a high-pressure situation, often by teachers who are uneasy about their own math skills.
The Brick Math program can help reduce students’ math anxiety. Students “see” the math by building models with LEGO® or LEGO-compatible bricks. They engage with the math by drawing solutions to math problems and by explaining the process they used in writing or orally. In this program, students use a wide variety of sensory skills that reinforce how to solve math problems.
Addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and fractions come alive to students when they learn with LEGO® bricks.
The New York Times article recommends, “When you work on calculations with children, try to do so with curiosity, playfulness and a sense of adventure.” When math becomes fun, the student’s anxiety level decreases. That’s the power of Brick Math.
Brick Math is a K-6 math curriculum that uses LEGO® bricks to model 11 different math subjects: Counting, Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division, Basic Fractions, Basic Measurement, Fraction Multiplication, Fraction Division, Advanced Measurement and Geometry, and Decimals. It works for homeschooling, math intervention, enrichment, and as a whole-school program. Materials are simple and affordable.
If you teach math or have a student at home who is learning K - 6th grade math, check brickmath.com. The website includes videos for both teacher training and direct instruction of students. You can learn more about how Brick Math improves students' math test scores and hear what people who are using Brick Math have to say about the program.