Since practice makes perfect, one effective method is to use your text book and write on paper all of the concepts along with equations that represent that concept. Keep each concept on a different sheet. Take notes and write down your opinion for every equation or algebra concept. You may not like it at first, but the more you practice and use this personal algebra notebook the better for you. You must be patient because at first it might seem like you are never going to be able to figure out how all of these numbers plug into one and other, so do not rush, remember that learning algebra takes time.
Children may also get started with money, time, and measuring, though it is not absolutely necessary to master any of that. The teacher should keep it playful, supply measuring cups, scales, clocks, and coins to have around, and answer questions.