Importance Of Equipping Foundational Numeracy In Your Child

Allows children to approach a solution in different ways and form different perspectives, strengthening not just their critical thinking but also setting a foundation for being more accepting and adapting to different approaches.

Foundational numeracy and literacy has been a significant factor to the growth of young minds and plays a vital role in their personality development. However, foundational numeracy, regardless of setting a precedent for the educators to follow suit and include in their curriculum, has not gotten its due credit. Children are assigned a few worksheets based on basic operations of subtraction and addition but the inquisitiveness is not nurtured passionately. At the tender age of 6-7 years is when the questions start brewing in a child's brain, thus, this is the time to fuel their spark and make them ask more of their doubts and satiate their curiosity. Foundational numeracy serves as a helpful tool in setting a way of life for young kids where the children are not just reading numbers but taking a logical approach by asking others to resolve their 'why?'

Foundational numeracy has been a matter of discussion as it is the most imperative aspect of learning ability for children and it refers to forming a strong foundation for elementary school students to do essential operations and prepare themselves with the basics for the times to come. The ability to attain basic literacy and numeracy skills in an early and foundational stage of schooling helps students to amalgamate their skills in the classroom learning for a better future. Foundational numeracy allows the children to approach a solution in different ways and form different perspectives, strengthening not just their critical thinking but also setting a foundation for being more accepting and adapting to different approaches.

Although it is an essential tool for children to create a strong base for higher education, the lack of quality learning at the ground level affects the growth of the children. Foundational literacy and numeracy focus on providing every child with basic skills in their early life. This further aids the children by providing additional support in their later stages of learning, thus becoming an imperative domain to focus on. The need of the hour is to invest more time and resources in foundational numeracy and focus on adaptive learning while setting a new pedagogy in the learning process of kids. This will enable the kids to level up their learning and retaining process while being on a steeper growth trajectory. It will also help them to master skills that aid them in choosing the right career path with high profitability. 

The union government, too, has aligned itself with this vision and has recently announced a new mission to improve foundational literacy and numeracy of early graders in school. This implementation of the New Education Policy in the public school systems by the central government is also playing a significant part in the process. The core objective of NEP is about creating a foundation with the experiential use of visuals and symbols and the usage of faster technology and greater connectivity.

With NEP 2020 being introduced by the Ministry of Education, the Indian education system has pivoted well to not let the physical closures of campuses affect learning in private schools. But with poor technology, infrastructure and connectivity in rural parts of the country, younger children are losing out on crucial foundational learning still remains a monumental challenge. However, going forward with a hybrid blended model of teaching, including curriculum revamping, pedagogical innovations, restructuring of teacher education programs, revisiting assessments and administrative support. Both the government and private schools in remote areas will ensure no loss of learning opportunities and foster global learning.

The pain areas observed worldwide is that students entering grade 5 cannot comprehend what they should have been taught in grade two because:

  • A deep understanding of theories is not available among students
  • There is a lot of dependency on technology by students to learn as well as for teachers to teach.
  • There is math anxiety faced by students because the subject is less engaging and more technical. 

Hence, there has to be a balance and a blend of technology and traditional teaching methods for adaptive learning. Students need to be taught that math is not only about question and answer, but rather problem and solution and these solutions can be applied in their real lives. The other policies by the government are also playing a vital role in supporting the new way of learning and thus encouraging the country to set up a new education culture.

There is no doubt that mathematics has always been a tricky subject for most of the students, hence it becomes essential for mentors to make mathematics relevant to a student by challenging them to perform better and thus instilling a sense of achievement. Every child has a different style of learning which needs to be acknowledged by educators. The clarity of these basic concepts will allow them to build a solid foundation paving way for better understanding in the future. At a younger age, they have to be exposed to as many different ideas and concepts as possible to allow a sense of wonder and curiosity to learn. Looking at today’s corporate world, there is a growing demand for coders, problem solvers and aptitude-related jobs. With foundational numeracy taking the lead and supporting the essentials of STEM education, these verticals will acquire ample encouragement and further prepare the children for this competitive world.

Foundational numeracy is now being introduced to the children with the help of intriguing educational ways such as setting up a gamified learning system and focusing on conceptual understanding. Gamified learning blended seamlessly with an adaptive approach of teaching makes for a good package to make students grasp and retain more. Setting a whole new pedagogy to penetrate children's minds and assessing them to track progress instead of putting graded labels and discourage them plays a crucial role in ascending their learning graph.

With the onset of the pandemic in 2020, the education industry took a big hit and the already dwindling literacy rate saw a further downfall. Luckily, with advancing technology the education industry found a way to keep its head above water. Ed-tech companies are paving the way for a smoother transition to technology-based learning. These brands are innovating at every step by bringing learning solutions that empower children to build foundational skills and thus gain confidence. 

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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