Fun Back to School Math Activities

Most children do not enjoy the thought of going back to school.  They have spent the summer happily playing, relaxing, and cartoon watching.  So they generally are not thrilled when they find out that school is right around the corner.  Here are some interesting math activities to make back to school at least a little more exciting.

Back to School Shopping

While the idea of going back to school might not be exciting, picking out school supplies can be a little more fun.  This year, instead of just buying their supplies for them, let your child be a little more involved in the process.  Give them the list of supplies and enough cash to cover the needed items.  Then take them to the store and let them pick out their notebooks, pencils, and folders.  It will seem like fun to them, but in reality, they will be using many math skills.  They will be estimating to add up the total they already have in their cart.  They will also be mentally subtracting to find out how much they have left to spend.  It’s a great real world exercise in using money that your children will find fun!

Map Their Perfect Classroom

Let your child plan out what they think the perfect classroom would look like.  This activity is simple.  Just give your child a piece of graph paper and let them plan to their heart’s content.  They can add anything they would want in a classroom.  Would it be fun to have a water slide?  Put it in.  Want a tree fort? No problem.  The math problem comes when everything has to fit in the classroom.  This is a great exercise not only in mapping but also in geometry. Your children will be drawing shapes and fitting them together in imaginative ways as they plan their idea of a perfect classroom!

Fill Out a School Planner

I’m sure you at some point will receive a school calendar (if you haven’t already).  You look over the dates on the calendar and write them down in some type of planner whether it is the app on your phone or an actual planner.  So why not let your child do the same thing?  Let your child pick out an inexpensive planner next time you are at the store.  Then give them colored pens or pencils and a copy of the calendar.  Help them find the right dates and fill in the events from the school calendar.  Reading and using a calendar is an important math skill.  By encouraging your child to use a planner you are reinforcing this skill and also giving them a great life skill that they will use as they get older.

You can make the dreaded back to school time a little more fun with these back to school activities.  What other fun math activities do you do with your children around back to school time?

Photo by: University of the Fraser Val

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