Nordengren, of NWEA, advises teachers to take the time to understand each child’s abilities and be sure not to waste precious time reteaching concepts they have already mastered or skipping ahead to topics for which they are unprepared.

He said parents can help, too, by incorporating math in their everyday life — grocery store check-out lines can provide a great opportunity to consider addition, subtraction, percentages and other, more complex topics — and by not speaking negatively about the subject in front of their children.

“If you have a parent that says, ‘I’m not a math person,’ or ‘We are not math people,’ that will put that deficit mindset into a kid’s brain,” Nordengren said.