Why Kids Should Use Their Fingers in Math Class
"This finger-representation area was, according to their study, also engaged to a greater extent with more complex problems that involved higher numbers and more manipulation. Other researchers have found that the better students’ knowledge of their fingers was in the first grade, the higher they scored on number comparison and estimation in the second grade. Even university students’ finger perception predicted their calculation scores."
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Outlined in this The Atlantic article is growing evidence that using fingers to count is an important part of a child’s development of number concepts. Research supports the argument both from behavioral and neuroscience studies that when children develop ways in which to perceive and represent their fingers, they ultimately get better at representing those fingers when addressing math problems, and that all leads to higher math achievement.