Thinking & Learning

It’s a Big Math World

Unless you’re a math whiz, these are the years when your child’s knowledge of math miiiight start to surpass yours. (Or at least, you might have to brush up on old skills to help them with their homework.) Get ready for math that goes beyond two plus two makes four.

Here’s what you can expect your big kid to be tackling in math:


In third grade: Your third grade mathematician is going to get into multiplication and division this year. They’ll understand the relationship between the two, and they’ll be able to use them to solve two-step word problems. They’ll begin their exploration of fractions, and geometry, too—they’ll learn about shapes and start understanding concepts like area and perimeter.


In fourth grade: This year they’ll deepen their understanding of fractions and start solving more complex, multi-step word problems. They’re building more sophisticated geometry knowledge, too, like understanding the differences between acute and obtuse angles.

(By the way, did you know that fourth grade is a big leap year for math? Learn more about why fourth grade math can be hard for some kids.)


In fifth grade: You’ll see your fifth grader working with fractions in more complex ways, like solving word problems by adding and subtracting fractions. They’ll be able to solve problems with decimals, and they’ll start working with concepts like volume and basic principles of algebra.