Ho Math Chess Research and Articles > An Innovative and Fun Way of Teaching Math

Child Education Franchise, math and chess tutor
25 Dec 2007

An Innovative and Fun Way of Teaching Math
Frank Ho
Teacher and founder of Ho Math and Chess
I have observed that one of the main reasons that children hate math is they have not mastered the foundation of math, surprisingly the root of problems can be traced to the basics they learned in the elementary grades such as addition, subtraction, multiplication or division. When elementary students are asked why do we have math? Lots of these children can relate math to our daily life such as shopping, cooking, measuring, driving, time, shapes etc. and most of the time they think math is important because it has something to do with counting and numbers.
It is very good these youngsters realize that math has relations to our daily life but does the traditional way of doing of math worksheets such as 2 + 3 reflect the environment today our youth lives? It certainly does not. Math is not just about counting numbers. Apart from teaching the basics of addition, subtraction, multiplication or division, math is supposed to teach our next generation on how to solve problems and be creative. Part of the problems why some children hate math worksheets is simply because these traditional worksheets do not represent the world they are living now.
Many "things" or "toys" our generation play already start to reflect what the society would be like in the future, things such as internet searching and browsing, image viewing, cell phones, roaming, instant messages, downloading and uploading information, compressed files, file formats etc. all of these will simply become part of their life and basic living skills. How do math worksheets reflect the way children are living now or will be in the future? Most school math textbooks still use the same style of worksheets to teach children basic math that is basically number crunches in straight top to down or left to right fashion. There is very little convergence of numbers, images, patterns, comparisons, searching, matching, sorting, classifying between one numbers is operated with another number. This "old" way of manipulating numbers does not represent what our children are doing in today's society. This may have explained why most young children still only think math as counting numbers, but not related to the way on how they process a variety of information in their daily living.
Ho Math and Chess simply uses international chess as a tool to converge the information of images, patterns, sorting, comparison, matching, tables, etc. all together with numbers to better reflect what children are facing or already doing today. We have achieved this learning in a fun way.  
Is there such a thing that math worksheets can be created so they will be fun-oriented that children can play with numbers and be rewarded with satisfying and with great fun? How can the dreaded drill style of math worksheets be improved such that they encourage whole-brain learning? How can math basics computations such as addition, subtraction multiplication or division be incorporated with fun gamed-based approach? Is it possible that children can improve their memory and problem solving skill in a gamed-based learning environment? Ho Math and Chess has created a math and chess integrated worksheets to give positive answers to all the above questions. So how does Ho Math and Chess put math, fun, thinking, creativity, and memory improvement all together?
Chess is a strategy game and it invigorates the thinking ability and has been around for thousands of years. Many organizations and schools have set up chess lessons and often math and chess are taught under the same roof but with no real integrated math and chess curriculum. The reason of why math and chess have traditionally been taught separately is there is really no existing connection mechanism between math and chess teaching. However, this has since changed after Frank Ho, founder of Ho Math and Chess invented the patent applied Symbolic Chess Language (SCL). Ho Math and Chess has successfully created the world’s first math and chess integrated workbook by using its proprietary intellectual product (SCL).
The future belongs to a generation who understands how to process information and the information might include digits, bytes, numbers, graphics, images, languages, symbols, equations etc. How
these different nature of information processing can be taught to kindergartners or primary students when they are learning arithmetic? It is not an easy task that is why there are so many different types of stand alone worksheets, namely logic, patterns, mazes, or crosswords. These worksheets are created without interrelations to each other. This kind of isolated information processing is no longer reflecting the real world the young generation is facing today or they will be living in the future.
The computing world children are facing today is a much like a rich tapestry, where a diversified fabrics and colours are integrated. Children today are absorbing not just numbers but an array of information like images, sound, music, symbols, spatial information, or even abstract ideas all bundled together and delivered through many types of media. Children today are not happy just working on pure number drill without any other stimulus or motivator. Realizing the importance of having fun while learning, Ho Math and Chess has been embarked on an important teaching philosophy that is to integrate chess into math worksheets so that children can learn math while having fun.
Ho Math and Chess created a special synergetic effect by integrating arithmetic basics, chess, mazes, and information processing all on one worksheet. This is accomplished through its own proprietary technologies (patents pending) such as SCL, Frankho Chess Mazes, and an innovative Ho Math and Chess Teaching Set.
With the new invention of Ho Math and Chess worksheets, a child is acting as a data warehouse manager and sorts data through a variety of tools namely chess, symbols, spatial relation, logic, comparison, tables, patterns, mazes, computing etc. by networking all kinds of information together. Only when children have successfully followed through instructions (SCL) and, as a result, created a question themselves, can a solution be found at last.
In Ho Math and Chess worksheets, the questions are not written out for children but must be mined (after children observing how data is moving) through data warehouse (mazes), and answers must be computed after conducting a series of logic thinking process which might include spatial relations, sorting, comparing, matching, classifying, tabling look-ups etc.
Ho Math and Chess trains children not only their basic computing ability but also train them to be an astute data warehouse manager or an excellent data miner by developing their problem solving ability and critical thinking skills.
Ho Math and Chess provides education and also entertainment value to get young children involved in the future world they will be facing.
At Ho Math and Chess, math learning is fun.

Frank Ho