Another recommendation for parents is to not allow children to utilize calculators at an early age. Children need to first develop their brains to be able to do mathematical computations on their own. Constantly using calculators at a young age can stunt the mathematical growth of children. If children develop math skills by mentally thinking of the answer to simple problems, they will be better prepared for everyday life, such as grocery shopping, balancing a checkbook, to name a few.
While the newer method does require computer access for every child, most schools now have that capability. As children do more hands-on learning on computers and less in books, these programs are capable of reaching them on a level they can understand.
Children can take classes from various organizations that will support their mathematical development. These organizations may offer classes in the summer or on the weekends. Some of the classes can teach children how to build robots, toy cars, toy airplanes, etc. These classes may be in the area of engineering, computer science or some other technical field.
I have observed teachers who really challenge their students to achieve higher order thinking These teachers take their students as early as the Second Grade and teach them how to add, subtract, multiply and divide using only their bran. We call this Mental Math. When I observed a Second Grade Class that had their students mentally answering math computation questions, I put my own son in that class. Shortly after being enrolled, He, too, learned how to do Mental Math. From that point on, math was my son's best subject. Teachers can really make a difference and parents can help affect change.