Children's learning is best motivated by a good 1-to-1 personal bond of a parent-child and/or teacher-child learning team - and parents can do this easiest using simple maths sheets with answers as their own 'school tests'. Computers and the internet may help learning, as can school, but BOTH can be very poor learning motivators. Give young kids an educational program they like the first time, for uncaring PC learning every day will make them like learning less ? And schools may mostly want kids to be quiet, and expect little on learning, so they tell you your child is doing fine when they are learning little. The good teacher-child methods of books, tests and personal encouragement are still crucial for your child. A teacher may have 30 children to teach and mostly use class teaching so your child may get 5 minutes a day teacher-child 1-to-1 time only (or none if you are unlucky and your child does not relate well to their teacher). Math Sheets are the very best tool to EASILY make a good personal motivating parent-child learning team bond. This will help all your child's learning, and be really enjoyable. Do NOT leave your kids future to only a school or computer, when just a little from you can really boost their motivation and then they will learn fine from school or computer. Many teachers use maths sheets themselves at home with their own children!
For maths sheets to work well, they need to be printed and be handed to your child without answers and be marked by you - just like a school test, though you are better making it your 'small school-test game'. You can print your own if you download our FREE automatic math sheet calculators, but you need you to have Microsoft Office Excel - and printing them involves time and costs. So you may well find it easier to use our printed Wilmots Wizard Math Sheets ;Kids love them ! ..... Parents love them ! ..... Schools love them ! ..... and they are a MUST for your kids !
Wilmots Wizard Math Sheets are challenging sets of core maths worksheets to give your kids, and a separate answer sheet for the marker (you !) so you can easily be your children's second maths teacher. Each evening after tea give them 1 or 2 sheets, saying eg "lets play school, here is today's test". They may do it in 5 minutes and hand it to you. You mark it in 1 minute with the answer sheet, tick for right answer and cross for wrong answer, and say what you think. eg "you did that well", or "you are improving", or "not bad, as some of the questions were harder" - as advised on the answer sheet. This done every day can be a piece of family fun that will really boost your child's learning motivation. Just 5 minutes and 10 pence a day will soon boost your child, and is a MUST for every parent these days. Your child will do these in whatever way they have been taught, but you do NOT need to know how they are getting their answers. If they have a second go at a question they got wrong and still cannot get it right, then they could ask their teacher and you may need one of the easier maths sheets. Your 5 minutes 1-to-1 every day will do good, but 0 minutes a day or 3 hours on odd occasions that suit you is no good for children and motivation - a little regular and reliable will motivate solidly.(There are other methods, all harder or dearer than Wilmots Wizard Math Sheets that most parents give up on.) If you are home schooling then rather more time will be needed on this, and on other teaching activity of course. Some are using these maths worksheets at appropriate levels with special needs pupils, to help build confidence and help track where they are and progress.Trialed in schools and homes and commended by teachers, parents and children.
Many employers consider that average GCSEs are now given to those who have learned nothing, and that only the few who get As or Bs show that they were learning (universities are now even doubting the value of As). Schools are mostly fine for children who really WANT to learn, but for many children now school is for passing time not learning - with their parents being told that they are doing fine. Some solid learning motivation is today's kids main need if they are to do well, and every child can do better. All that schools ever advised me for my children was "buy them lots to read", but reading lots of comics can make children LESS interested in school learning. A little regular parent-child school type work is best. If your child is going along with the 'learning isn't cool' idea, you may never know. Schools may show you 'your child's good class work' that looks like they have learnt a lot - but their class was just told to copy something. They have only learnt to 'copy to fool your parents into thinking you know a lot'. But their 'average' marks will not fool today's employers who know only As and Bs are good.
For schools it is better if children get 7 GCSEs at 'C', rather than 4 at 'D' with 1 at 'A' or 'B'. But employers do not rate Cs that can mean a score of only 20%, and are impressed with one A or B. Schools always put most effort into children's weaknesses, which is mostly right for younger children. But older children especially will do better developing their strengths !
School-set homework is unhelpful for children under 10 and should only slowly build-up after that. Most parents don't understand such school homework, and don't help with it, and much of it is poorly marked or not marked by the school. Such homework is schoolwork that children should be able to do themselves, though parents can reasonably try helping if children ask. If your child's school gives too much homework, ask them to keep it down as you are doing your own daily school-type work that YOU set and mark with your children. A 5-minute maths worksheet a day is easy and works wonders. Maybe your school will give YOU some of the homework with answers for YOU to set for your child if you ask ? It would be better than school-set homework.
If you think that you have a child in advance of their class, or behind their class, then be sure to let their school know and they may be able to organise something suitable. And if that is the case then maybe also contact a suitable group, like Mensa or the Dyslexia Institute (their website links are below). Also see the bottom of our homepage.
Sadly on 8/11/2006, our lovely cat Sylvester died of acute kidney failure aged 13. He is dearly missed by myself, Adam and Colin. (the picture of Sylvester below was taken by Adam Wilmot) Also remembering his 'mum', my wife Mary, who died 10/7/2003 of pneumonia aged 41. She also is missed by myself and sons Adam and Colin.