Mathematics

Mathematics is one of the seven areas of the early years foundation stage and is used to develop a child's confidence and ability with number but also to encourage their understanding of shapes, space and measures. It is important children are able to do this in a range of ways including adding and subtracting, using quantities and objects and understanding concepts like weight, position, distance and money.

Below you will find a range of practical articles and expert features that cover mathematics to help you develop these skills and overcome challenges you might encounter. For more information on the EYFS you can download latest version of the statutory framework here.

Latest Practical

Maths: ‘The Twelve Days Of Christmas’

Find out how this traditional festive song can help to consolidate number and sequence recognition, counting forwards and backwards, practising prepositions and also learning a variety of action words.

Maths: Follow a pattern

Seize the moment to support children to explore ideas to do with repeating patterns as they follow their own play and exploration. Snakes can provide the inspiration – by threading beads on to a string or using loose parts outdoors.

Maths: Hop in the box

Observe how motivated children become when they create their own number games and develop positional language by following each other.

Maths: Creepy crawlies

Bug hunts can be a focus for indoors as well as outdoors. Tap into children's fascinations, with cues to count, categorise and respect these tiny creatures.

Communication and language: Roma adventure

The Lost Homework is a great book to link creative activities such as junk modelling and cooking while helping children to understand a chain of events.

Maths: Testing the water

Use the ‘Big’ books of Julia Jarman to involve children talking spontaneously about mathematical concepts such as full and empty, big and small and near and far.

Maths: Master bakers

Easter baking is an opportunity to practise problem solving. Do children know what to do if they take their cakes out of the oven and they are not properly baked yet? How can they tell if a cake is cooked all the way through? It's time to decide!

Latest Features

My little mermaid

Take a look at this month’s practical supplement which has a wealth of seasonal ideas to support children’s learning through play. Use our expert pointers on the Characteristics of Effective Leaning to create meaningful observations and enhance your knowledge of each individual child.

Young children’s maths learning in danger of taking a backwards step

Changes to the Early Learning Goals for mathematics in the revised EYFS do not reflect the input from experts and research, and will not support children to develop a love of the subject, says the Early Childhood Mathematics Group.

Maths is a piece of cake

Explore these tips which can be passed to parents at home for making maths learning a fun and stress-free experience.

Get baking!

Prepare for Easter by involving children in some simple baking activities that will also develop their maths and literacy skills.

Opinion: Out for the count

Is there a danger that, in squeezing in so many elements, the proposed Early Learning Goals for mathematics will be unachievable for all but a few children, leading to many being assessed as failing before they start school?

Tuff decisions

Ailsa Chapman re-visits that stalwart of early years resourcing – the tuff tray, and suggests ways to extend its scope, with a range of imaginative ideas that children can take in any direction.

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