Mathematics is a school subject that brought many of us to the brink of despair in our childhood and youth.
From my personal experience I can only say that I often sat in front of the math books for hours and simply didn't understand it. A “don’t act like that, it’s not that difficult!” didn't make it any easier. So I came to terms with the fact that mathematics just doesn't suit me and that there are people with a talent for numbers and people like me who have no talent at all with numbers.
But what I have done in the last few years in connection with my work in a Montessori daycare center But it was something completely different: every small child counts, whether it's the wagons on the toy train, the cookies for dessert, or the steps up to the apartment door. They start to write numbers, they add and subtract and they are interested in numbers and quantities.
Of course, they don't yet have an idea of large quantities, but they love discovering patterns, continuing them, learning and understanding connections and then applying what they have learned. They want to get their heads in order! It's not just children who do this - it's human nature to look for patterns and structures, order and logic in a wide variety of things.
According to Maria Montessori, every child has the “mathematical spirit” from birth, which means that mathematical abilities are innate. However, they must be able to develop and not just in elementary school. Children want to learn and understand even beforehand. The good thing is that our everyday lives are full of mathematics and a lot can be learned and understood here. When counting plates at the breakfast table, when cutting the cake in half, or when weighing the ingredients for the cake batter. In order to appeal to the mathematical mind, you don't necessarily need to do calculations on paper. Everything that has to do with order, structure, classification and qualification appeals to the mathematical mind. It can be small experiments, folding paper, counting food. All these little things in your everyday life develop the mathematical mind.
There are great Montessori materials that will develop your child's mathematical mind. Your child will have a lot of fun with these exercises and will use them intuitively. We have some of these in our shop, here you can look at them at your leisure.
Mathematics is not rocket science and the mathematical spirit is in all of us!