Five common math misconceptions; take action now if your child show any of it!

Mar 24, 2022 | Red Deer

Don't let your child show any sign of these misconceptions; stop problems before they start!


These are some misconceptions many children develop over the first few years of their math education. It is because the skills – for whatever reason – are not adequately addressed and reinforced in the classroom. We sometimes scratch our head, because often the student says that their mark at school is not bad, between 80% to 90% mark – but when assessed, they make some fundamental mistakes 🤷‍♀️

Pay attention to these notions; your child might show any of these. If they do, there is a problem and you need to take action immediately before it gets bigger.

  1. They think there is no half of odd numbers. “There is no such thing as half of five!” Yes, we hear this often, even from higher elementary students.
  2. Doesn’t know addition and subtraction facts through 15+15 to automaticity. And doesn’t know multiplication and division facts through 12x12 to automaticity.
  3. Thinks that 1/11 is bigger than 1/7 because 11 is bigger than 7.
  4. Thinks you can never take a big number from a small number. It is quite common to see higher elementary students doing vertical addition problems like 74-28 and they would say 54 .. because 8 is bigger than 4, right?
  5. Thinks that ½ + ½ is 2/4. Or 2/5 + 1/5 is 3/10. 

There are many other red flags, but let’s start with these five things.  A sixth grader who shows any of the above signs will likely have problems in middle school math. But don’t wait until they are in the 6th grade; it would be best if you could stop these problems before they start. Giving them a strong math foundation – especially in their early education – would help them in their math learning journey down the road. Developing mathematical thinking since early is important, as math knowledge in young age predicts later academic achievement better than early reading skills.


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Mathnasium of Red Deer is your neighbourhood’s math-only learning centre, and we are here to help your child. Our centre director, Riwan, and the whole team, would be happy to meet you! We are conveniently located in the shopping destination area in Red Deer: 5250 22nd St, Unit 30 B – at the Gaetz Avenue Crossing shopping centre, in the same area as Chapters Indigo/Starbucks, Michael Arts, Petland and Ashley, and the phone number is 403-872 MATH (6284). 

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