Math Helping Your Eight-Year-Old Develop Important Spatial Skills

Spatial reasoning connects math to the physical world and includes skills like reading maps, understanding symmetry and building 3D objects. Research indicates that spatial reasoning skills correlate to early achievement in mathematics and "strongly predict" who will pursue STEM careers later in life. At age eight, your child is ready for more spatial challenges — navigating, exploring and building. And you can help them grow with fun activities at home!

Simple activities to help your child strengthen spatial sense:

Discover Alphabet Symmetry

Did you realize that some capital letters are symmetrical and some are not? Work with your child to figure out if each capital letter has a vertical or horizontal line of symmetry, then try to figure out words to write with them. (Examples: MOM and TOOT have vertical lines of symmetry, while BEE and CODE have horizontal lines of symmetry.) Place a small hand mirror along the line of symmetry to test your words.

The Return of Symmetric Al

Using printable shapes and objects around the room, your child can practice identifying things that are symmetrical, or the same on both sides.

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Mapping with Coordinates

At this age, your child can start to locate points on a map using coordinates. Playing the game of Battleship is a fun way to practice. You can print out your own battleship boards or make your own!

Storm Dodger Game

You and your child can explore math and meteorology with this Storm Tracking game. Navigate a game board while avoiding the advancing storm to win!

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Cut Out Symmetrical Snowflakes

It's fun to explore symmetrical properties by cutting up paper along a fold. Fold a piece of paper in half and then in half again. Have your child cut small shapes along the folds. When you open it up, you will be surprised by the beautiful paper shapes you have created! 

Make Your Own Mathroom

The Mathroom is one of the most important rooms at Odd Squad headquarters. Now your child can make her own Mathroom at home with this fun paper craft.

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Go on a Treasure Hunt

Making and following a treasure map based on your living room or backyard will help your child translate a two-dimensional bird’s-eye view into the three-dimensional real world. Hide an object and mark it on the map with a red X for your child to hunt down. Then have your child draw a map and hide an object for you to find!

The Cat in the Hat Can Map This and That

The Cat in the Hat is making a map. Your child can practice geometry skills and making maps from a bird's eye view by selecting the shape, size, color, and decorations for a room or outdoor play space.

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Help Your Child Learn to Love Math with Odd Squad

Odd Squad focuses on a kid-run agency that saves the day whenever something unusual happens. Emphasizing problem solving, teamwork and perseverance in every strange and hilarious new assignment, agents use math to investigate weird problems -- and your child can help!

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Activity Finder: Learn With Your Eight-Year-Old

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