Cuisenaire Rods

“My Daughter Doesn’t Like Math”

I got a message today through my facebook page:

My daughter is 10 year old and she does not like math. What stuff online in math should I use to make her interested in maths? Thanks in advance

I wondered for a while how best to answer this. In the end, I wrote this reply:

Perhaps she doesn’t like it because of the way it’s taught. Different kids learn in different ways – some are very visual learner – they love to see pictures and diagrams showing how things work. Others are “kinesthetic” learners – they learn best when they can physically manipulate learning tools with their hands. Others learn best by hearing.

Across these dimensions, there are kids who are content to memorise a bunch of facts, others won’t learn anything unless they see the big picture. Still others learn best by solving problems themselves – explanations won’t help them unless they try to solve problems for themselves first. Some do best with a strict timetable and regimen, others need to be able to explore the topic for themselves, pursuing their own directions, guided rather than directed by the teacher.

What kind of learner is your daughter?

If her teacher’s teaching style doesn’t match your daughter’s learning style, she won’t learn well, she won’t enjoy maths. Some teachers have been trained to recognise the different learning styles of their students, but not all have.

If you can recognise your daughter’s learning style, you can provide activities that will be suitable for her – that present the same basic concepts but in a different way.

However, there are ways in which all kids are the same. They respond best to positive reinforcement – praise for accomplishments, rather than scolding for small mistakes. Kids learn well through play, which is why I set up a website of math games for kids, at

Hopefully you can absorb some of these thoughts and see how they apply in your daughter’s situation.

Tell me what you think in the comments below!