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Emma Smith
100 Ways in 100 Days to Teach Your Baby Maths
Emma L Smith, author

Adult; Self-Help, Sex & Relationships, Psychology, Philosophy, Fashion; (Market)

The world is full of maths, and your baby is full of curiosity. Let your baby lead the way as you explore the wonderful world of maths together through 100 daily activities, stories, and songs. No flashcards, no worksheets, no right or wrong, and no maths anxiety. Within this 100-day maths journey, you will discover: * Babies seem to be born with an amazing number sense. * Parents have the power to show their babies that maths is enjoyable and not something to be anxious about. * Babies can enjoy maths activities while boosting other areas of development. * The best time to start enjoying maths is in infancy. What about the effect of gender, culture, sleep, diet—even the type of pushchair you buy? 100 Ways in 100 Days to Teach Your Baby Maths holds the answers.
Though many adults may struggle to remember basic rules of multiplication, chartered accountant and Institute of Actuaries fellow Emma Smith insists that we were born with the capacity to master mathematics. She cites research noting that, in the womb, babies understand shapes; at seven hours old they’re aware of quantities; at six months they can assess probability; and by nine months babies comprehend addition and subtraction. Smith lays out a clear plan for parents to nourish and encourage those math skills every day, through purposeful parent interactions rather than special curriculum, books, or worksheets.

Instead, she guides parents in shifting their mindset to incorporate math into everyday interactions with their children. Even the most math averse parent can handle Smith’s tasks—and indeed, she believes that perhaps those math averse parents are the ones who need to foster math skills in their child the most, so that the “maths anxiety” cycle can be broken. Smith’s activities are simple: singing nursery rhymes, counting food as you eat it, and naming shapes and objects as a baby looks at them. The sly genius of this work is teaching parents to incrementally change the way they think about math and its presence in their children’s world, a technique that Smith connects to studies that reveal the complexity and capability of the infant brain. Smith’s writing will convince even many of those reluctant parents who were themselves not encouraged to engage with math while growing up.

Though structured as a day-by-day handbook, 100 Ways in 100 Days can also simply be skimmed for catchy ideas, used as a refresher for those looking to enrich play with their children, or be read in one sitting to select only those tools that seem the easiest to apply. With an encouraging tone, well-described suggestions, and a fresh outlook on infant development, 100 Ways in 100 Days is a welcome read for anyone caring for infants.

Takeaway: Simple activities drawn from research on babies’ brains make this a great read for parents and caregivers.

Great for fans of: Daniel J Siegel and Tina Payne Bryson’s The Whole-Brain Child Workbook, Tara Greaney’s Montessori at Home.

Production grades
Cover: A-
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A
Marketing copy: A