Skip to main content
It's Elementary: A Parent's Guide to K-5 Mathematics
Faculty Authored Books
  • Joy W. Whitenack, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Laurie O. Cavey, Boise State University
  • Catherine Henney, Sabot at Stony Point
What's happened to the addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division you learned in school? And why are your children talking in math class and sharing answers? In friendly, jargon-free language, It's Elementary: A Parent's Guide to K-5 Mathematics not only decodes current teaching practices but also demystifies the fundamental concepts that your children need to understand to be successful math learners—and you need to grasp to help them. Illustrated with numerous examples of real student's classroom work, It's Elementary shows you how children progress in their mathematical thinking from simple counting techniques to sophisticated strategies for adding, subtracting, multiplying, and dividing whole numbers, integers, fractions, and decimals. You will discover why— today's teaching emphasizes understanding why a solution works as well as how to solve the problem; problem solving produces more confident, creative, and accurate math students than memorizing formulas does; practice and drills can be great tools—but only at the right stage of learning; and collaborative learning—talking and sharing—not only helps children clarify their own thoughts about math but also introduces them to new ideas and strategies. Most important, It's Elementary makes you an effective participant in your children's math education. "Things to Do" at the end of each chapter offers practical actions and activities, and a special chapter, "Mathematics at Home," provides advice and guidance, from helping with homework and dealing with math anxiety to choosing math games and talking to your children about math beyond homework and school. It's Elementary: A Parent's Guide to K-5 Mathematics is your all-in-one source for helping your children to be successful—and happy—math students.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics
Publication Date
  • mathematics,
  • study and teaching (early childhood),
  • study and teaching (elementary),
  • education—parent participation,
  • homework
Citation Information
Joy W. Whitenack, Laurie O. Cavey and Catherine Henney. It's Elementary: A Parent's Guide to K-5 Mathematics. Reston(2015)
Available at: