Playing Numerical Board Games Boosts Number Skills in Preschoolers

Playing a simple board game such as Chutes and Ladders can improve a preschooler’s numerical knowledge, researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have found.

Researchers knew that children varied greatly in the math knowledge they brought to school, with low-income children tending to have far less math knowledge than their peers from middle-income families. It is believed that this early gap has long-term consequences and probably reflects a difference in exposure to informal numerical activities.

Board games provide a good, informal opportunity for young children to learn about consecutive numbering and the relation of numerals and their sizes.

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