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This may come as a surprise.

But despite all the advances in education, many kids still struggle in the math class.

Math is an important subject, yet many kids just don't “get it".

Teachers can only devote a limited amount of personal attention to each student.

And parents are so busy with their own work nowadays, they don't have time to help their children with school work.

That's where YOU, the grandparent, come in!

Grandparents teach their grandchildren through example and play a role in encouraging them to be successful and set goals.

Grandparents are naturally forgiving and patient, and children sense that.

As a grandparent you can help right from the time your grandkids are toddlers, by asking them questions involving numbers, and showing them how important math is to our lives:

- Ask them number-based questions, like: “How many books do you want to read tonight?"

- Or: “How many miles to grandma's house?"

- Show them basic fractions by dividing groups of jelly beans into halves and quarters.

- Bake cookies together and teach them how to measure ingredients.

- Make something in the wood shop and teach them how to use a ruler.

The time you spend with your grandchild is a blessing for both of you. If you work with your grandchildren and teach them the simple basics of math, they will develop a natural talent for it and move to the head of the class.

It is important to be positive, patient and enthusiastic. You have a whole lifetime of experiences to share with them. You can be there for them if they become discouraged in school.

Don't be negative about math - be positive and enthusiastic. Your attitude will greatly influence them. You can help them over the bumps by showing them that math is simple if you break it down to the basics and build from there.

Show them that math is nothing to fear, but rather something to enjoy. Show them how good it feels to solve problems and how wonderful learning is.

Teach your grandchildren that math is a tool we use everyday from working at our jobs, using checkbooks, going to the store, furnishing our homes, eating in restaurants, planning vacations and converting our currency.

Being a grandparent is one of the miracles of life. There is a natural bond of human affection between grandparent and grandchild that brings a lifetime of joy and love to you both.

Spending time with them and really helping them will make all the difference in the world, and it will make math fun for them, too.

Successful students will remember spending time with their grandparents and learning life's lessons.

From precious baby to challenging teenager, they will remember you were there every step of the way.

Kenneth Williams is a math teacher with over 31 years teaching experience. He is also author of the popular “Fun With Figures" mental math course, which shows anyone aged 8 to 80 the easy way to do impressive mental calculations. Visit the website today for more details at: http://FunWithFigures.com

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