One of the most important math skills children have to learn is estimation. Estimation is not necessarily about getting the exact right answer; however, it is about getting close. Unfortunately, there are a lot of children who struggle to grasp this concept. One of the major reasons why has to do with something called number sense. This refers to the ability of children the tell how numbers relate to one another. Without this specific skill, estimation is very difficult.
Kids may struggle with the concept of estimation if it has not been clearly explained to them. They may still believe that numbers have to be exact. They may not have a lot of practice guessing numbers of different quantities. All kids develop differently. All kids have different learning styles.
In some cases, difficulty with estimation could be a sign of dyscalculia. There are a few ways caregivers can help children learn estimation. These include:
Use hands-on tools to help children visualize better
Ask children to explain how they approach the problem
Talk about your own trouble with math in the past
Make sure children take a break from time to time
Learn more about helping children estimate properly with this article on Understood.org!