I often describe math to students as a "foreign language." Many of the terms and words are used to describe specific details that bring about the uniqueness of a concept that is being depicted through numbers. "Know the words," is what I say and suggest to students and parents to have a dictionary ready to look up even the simplest of words like, 'and, or, of, difference.' These words give 'clues' to the students and suggest what operation to use to solve problems. My second statement is, "Know the rules." Math is logical, factual, truthful. The numbers can be trusted if the student follows the rules. The rules are in place to bring truth to the world around them through numbers. So, when learning the language of math remember two things: "Know the words" and "Know the rules" and the numbers will bring confidence to the students trying to understand their language of numbers.