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Early knowledge in math has a significant bearing on children’s achievement in later life, just like that of early literacy. A new research was conducted by scientists at the Boston College in this regard. Its findings were published in the journal of Child Development.

They assessed mother’s support in their child’s math skills by analyzing how these moms assisted and guided the learning of their 3-year-olds as they played with blocks and toy cash register. They conducted these assessments by studying 10 minute free-play interactions between children and their mothers which were previously videotaped. 140 such videos of Boston residents were analyzed. The participants of this study were ethnically and economically diverse.

It was seen that these mothers assisted their Child’s math skills in a number of ways. They helped them recognize written numbers, count objects, or label the size of object sets. It has found that children who receive their mother’s assistance during play, specifically in labeling quantities of items, had better math achievement at 4 ½ and 5 years of age.

Thus early maternal support in numerical skills has a strong and lasting connection with the child’s math achievement.

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