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Major Pitfalls by Grade: First Grade

"My daughter is struggling in math", "my son hates math"... these are common concerns we begin to hear by the time the honeymoon period dust settles in October. When first graders hit the stumbling blocks, some try to skip them all together as if the problem would go away. Others simply struggle, lose confidence and begin to hate math. Here are some common pitfalls by grade you may be able to tackle ahead.


Grade 1: carry and borrow

Most students have no trouble operating simple addition and subtraction (1 + 2 = 3). But some have a hard time understanding addition which produces double digit sums. Many of them start memorizing answers instead of thinking of how to solve the problem. Carry and borrow are not easy operations to memorize.


It's helpful to understand number pairs which add to 10 (5 + 5 = 10) because this can be applied to solve operations of larger numbers. Instead of repeating drills, it is important to incorporate these ideas into daily activities such as shopping and cooking. Young students need to see how the numbers can be applied in real life.



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