– A good level of math skills in preschool helps children succeed later on. According to a recent study, preschoolers are more likely to be good at math at kindergarten entry if they understand early the two following basic concepts: word association with numbers and the quantities numbers represent. Young children who understand that addition and subtraction mean you get more or less of something are also more likely to succeed in math, explained psychologist Dave Geary, from the University of Missouri.

– Preschoolers have to grasp, for example, that the word “two” means a pair of things, such as their hands, legs or eyes. Geary recommends to use groups of three or fewer items when teaching basic math to children. “So you start with one and you add one more – how many is that? Or you start with three and you take away two, how many is that?” said Geary. He and his team believe that the result of their study could help focus better on what children need to learn before kindergarten and help them to achieve better in school.



Allegory of Arithmetic by Laurent de La Hyre (Wikimedia Commons)