Photo: Kate Samp for Strategies for Children
Photo: Kate Samp for Strategies for Children

Last December, Liz Simons wrote an opinion piece about early education for the San Jose Mercury News called “Kids and Math: Teaching it early, at home and in school, is critical.”

“Surprisingly few people know how important it is to teach little kids math,” Simons wrote, “but the math a child knows upon starting kindergarten is one of the strongest predictors of later school success – at least as predictive as literacy and more than social-emotional skills.”

Simons is the president of the Heising-Simons Foundation, which is dedicated to sustainable, research-based solutions in education, environment, science, and policy. The foundation “promotes the development of math skills and interest in math in young children (preschool to grade 3).” Two of the foundation’s reports on early math are available here.

Simons’ piece is also posted as “Give Them Math” on the website of Too Small to Fail, a nonprofit organization that encourages parents and businesses to take actions to support the health and well-being of children ages 0 to 5.

Teaching math in early education settings should be fun.  As Simons wrote, “children delight in purposeful, playful mathematics instruction.”