To the Editor:
Although math anxiety is a sad and significant barrier to student learning (“Researchers Develop Scales to Measure Students’ Math Anxiety,” May 17, 2017), it is not an unsolvable problem. Ironically, an article published in the same issue of Education Week (“Do Digital Learning Games Improve Young Students’ Mathematics Skills?”) suggests a good solution: math games.
Working with numbers just for the fun of it develops students’ skills and makes them feel comfortable with various math operations. If kindergartners who suffer from severe mathanxiety were given simple games with numbers appropriate for their age group—between zero and 10—instead of math problems on paper, many young children might start their schooling with the conviction that math is, and will continue to be, fun.
Retired School Principal
A version of this article appeared in the June 07, 2017 edition of Education Week as How to Overcome Math Anxiety