Knowing the order of numbers will help young children progress in mathematics at school, an American study shows. Even if it is not compulsory for the school, this familiarization with the numbers would be a plus.
Games can help: puzzles and blocks will consolidate his spatial skills and table games (with dice or cards) will teach him the linear order of numbers -1, 2, 3, and so on.
Spatial skills, according to the researchers, play a crucial role in the development of numerical reasoning: arithmetic, in particular.
For example, Elizabeth Gunderson advises parents to play puzzles and other block building often. The ideal would be to use a “spatial language” to describe the world – like saying that the piece of the puzzle has a right angle or that this block is bigger than the other.
Parents can also incorporate numbers and math into daily activities, such as asking the child to count his toys – “you have 5 marbles, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5” – and to play games. The table where you have to count and remember the order of the numbers, like the Snakes and Ladders games.
Researchers have found that 5-year spatial skills predict performance in 8-year computational approximations, particularly when children are very early in understanding the order of numbers.
They also saw that the spatial skills of children (eg, mental processing ability) early in the 1st primary school are predicting a better understanding of all figures throughout the school year.
In a first experiment, 152 children of 1st and 2^e grade were put numbers in a numbered sequence of 0 to 1000 but also find the right part of reforming a geometrical figure.
In the second experiment, the researchers assessed the mathematical knowledge of 42 six-year-olds whose spatial skills they had measured at the daycare: for example, Sarah had 20 cookies, and she was given 16 more, in her more than Thomas?