To help kids catch up, one foundation aims to make math as much fun as a bedtime story

The Bedtime Math Foundation's mission is to make math a fun part of everyday life.

Christie Ileto Image
Monday, August 22, 2022
Foundation aims to make math as much fun as a bedtime story
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The Bedtime Math Foundation's missing is to make math a fun part of everyday life.

SUMMIT, New Jersey (WPVI) -- As kids head back to school, many are still struggling to catch up from skills lost during the pandemic.

That is especially true when it comes to math.

But now there is an innovative, free program helping parents bridge the gap.

"Because of COVID-19, students are more than half a year behind in math skills," says a narrator.

That's the public service announcement of the Bedtime Math Foundation's new campaign to make math a fun part of everyday life.

"I started Bedtime Math 10 years ago just to think of math the way we think of the bedtime story, which is such a beloved tradition," says Bedtime Math founder Laura Overdeck.

Overdeck's own kids had a ball solving funny math problems at night.

Today, she says they are very comfortable and confident doing math on their own.

To make math like the bedtime story, she offers a new problem every day through the website or app showing math is all around us.

"The bedtime math problem takes four or five minutes, and you do that a couple times a week. And there's a huge effect because what it does is it changes the way you talk about math all the time," says Overdeck.

And parents get more comfortable with math, too, getting over their own fear of numbers and math principles.

Overdeck says research shows children can gain an extra three months of math skills in a school year.

Be Part of the Equation is a special push to involve parents in closing the COVID-19 gap.

And it offers extra help:

"Lots of resources on how to talk to your kid, how to talk to your teacher, how to talk to your school. It's all there, because we know sometimes parents get intimidated," notes Overdeck.

She credits helping her mother with baking at an early age and being her father's workshop helper with creating the foundation that enabled her to get an astrophysics degree at Princeton.