One of the most common mathematical questions that my friends ask me is, “What can I do to help my child(ren) in their mathematical studies?” On this page, I’ve compiled a list of resources that I hope can be of assistance.
Addition, Subtraction, Multiplication, Division
- Cool Math 4 Kids
- Math Fact Cafe
- Schoolhouse Rock: Multiplication Rock
- Who’s Afraid of the Seven Times Table
- Bedtime Math See also their Parent Guide and Facebook page. (Disclaimer: I was an acquaintance of the founder’s husband when we were in college.)
- The Math Book for Girls and Other Beings Who Count, by V. Wyatt. Lots of fun activities for children (not just girls) in grades 3-6.
- You Can Count on Monsters, by R. E. Schwartz. This is a really cute and well-illustrated book for teaching children about factors, prime and composite numbers, and factor trees. The back of the book even covers, at a level children can understand, the sieve of Erastothenes and the proof that there are an infinite number of prime numbers.
- How to be a Math Genius, by M. Goldsmith.
- G is for Googol: A Math Alphabet Book, by D. M. Schwartz. This author also wrote How Much Is A Million? and Millions to Measure, about other highly engaging books.
- Becoming a Mental Math Wizard, by J. Lucas.
- What’s Math All About?, by Alex Frith, Minna Lacey, and Lisa Jane Gillespie
- 50 Amazing Things Kids Need To Know About Math, by Anne Rooney
- Cogito. From their website:
On Cogito, gifted kids from all over the world interested in math and science gather to talk to each other, as well as working scientists and mathematicians, about black holes, extrasolar planets, epigenetics, oceanography. Most of the site is open to the public, but the interactive areas, including the discussion forums, groups, and blog creation, are for members only. Membership is by invitation. So far, Cogito members come from more than 70 countries. Most are still in the United States, but the site is looking to expand further internationally.
Through Cogito, students have had the chance to talk with Terry Tao, 2007 recipient of the Fields Medal in mathematics (the equivalent on that subject of the Nobel prize), Johns Hopkins stem cell pioneer Doug Kerr, and geophysicist Allen West, whose theories about the extinction of the great mammals were featured in NOVA on PBS.
“I’ve never seen a site like this before, where such talented kids can get together without being pressured by homework and just talk about academics — really talk,” said Jeffrey Lin, a recent Johns Hopkins graduate who is now writing a life-after-college blog for Cogito. “I wish there has been a site like this when I was in high school.”
I should also mention that Cogito maintains a great Programs and Events page, featuring competitions, distance education opportunities, and summer camps that are available for gifted children across the United States (and, in many cases, internationally.)
- Center for Talented Youth at Johns Hopkins University. I can’t emphasize highly enough how helpful CTY was to me when I was in grade school (not to mention how much it helped my overwhelmed parents who knew they had a precocious son but didn’t know how to go about fostering that interest). CTY sponsors Cogito as well as the Julian C. Stanley Study for Exceptional Talent and Imagine magazine, among other resources.
- Texas Academy of Mathematics and Science. I am very proud to be associated with this wonderful program for gifted Texas high school juniors and seniors.
- Sequence States and Capitals
- Ten Days in Europe
- KenKen (a Sudoku-like puzzle, except with addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division)
- It’s really hard to find a good kids’ science book which encourages kids to actually *do* science. We received the TIME Kids Super Science Book as a gift, though, and it’s pretty good.
- The Science Museum of Oklahoma may be the best science museum within driving distance of the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex. (I haven’t yet visited the new Perot Museum in Dallas, though.)
- Steve Spangler Science Camp Experiments