Sharpening your Math Skills at the Supermarket

checkoutA recent study shows that students who are good at estimating quantities without counting – like choosing which checkout line at the supermarket will move faster by guessing the number of people in it – do better in math at school.  Researchers from Duke University gave math tests to two groups of students.  Then, one group was given 10 lessons in adding and subtracting large quantities of dots without counting.

In a follow-up math test, the students who most improved their scores from the first test were the ones who were given the 10 lessons.  So if you practice guessing quantities without counting, you’ll do better in the classroom.  Some ways to practice include trying to figure out the number of M&Ms in a bag, pickles in a jar or paperclips in a box.

Or practice choosing the fastest check-out line the next time you’re at the supermarket 🙂

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