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

Mathematics: Ideas take shape

  • Hilary White, teacher, Somerset

In this last in a series on ‘maths talk’, we look at using heuristic play to introduce shape names and terminology, and explore linked activities that encourage children to confidently use new words.

Tuff Trays are an important resource at Cypress Primary School Nursery, in Croydon

Maths: Tuff problems

  • Hilary White, teacher, based in Somerset

For young children, mathematical learning and development is all about the concepts of quantity, space and distance. At this early stage, the hands on exploration of these concepts is of key importance – and a Tuff Tray makes the perfect resource.

Sticky situation!

  • Claire Hewson

Take time to make a tactile exploration of number. Claire Hewson suggests using petroleum jelly, flour and glitter to make slimy tracings and repeating patterns which children can identify and compare.

Messy measuring

  • Claire Hewson

To understand the concepts of weight and measure children need to explore, experiment and get their hands dirty. This becomes all the more relevant when placed in the context of a picture book narrative.

Whatever the weather we play

  • Sarah Neville

There is one thing you can predict about a British summer, it is completely unpredictable! But as we know, with the right assortment of clothes, we go outside come rain or shine.

Mathematics: A for Addition...

  • Paula Hammond and Stephen Lillie

This month, we start a new series based on the maths area of learning in the foundation stage, providing an A-Z of activities that will help children progress while having fun.

Mathematics: B for Balance...

  • Paula Hammond and Stephen Lillie

This month, we continue our series based on the maths area of learning in the foundation stage, providing an A-Z of activities that will help children progress while having fun.

Latest Features

Children enjoy time spent in the mud kitchen at Busy Bees Hartham Park Nursery.

Glorious mud!

  • Karen Faux

Winter is nearly over and if you’ve recently done an audit of your outdoor space, you might now be thinking about giving your mud kitchen a revamp, and introducing some new resources. If you haven’t yet set up a mud kitchen, now is definitely the time to start planning one.

Wrap up!

  • Karen Faux

'There's no such thing as bad weather – just inappropriate clothing,' as the saying goes. Use children’s colourful winter clothing as a link to many areas of learning.

Autumn leaves – free and versatile!

Autumn leaves – try these five creative activities!

  • Karen Faux

Autumn leaves are a key sign of the changing seasons and make a colourful, accessible and versatile resource for play and exploration. The beauty of them is that at this time of the year they are available in abundance – and completely free.

Plant some number ideas

  • Sal McKeown

Sal McKeown discovers how digital program Mathseeds is putting the fun into the learning and practising of key mathematical concepts at a London primary, and why teachers find it an easy resource to navigate.

Primed for mathematics

  • Penny Webb

Continuing our exploration of the prime and specific areas of learning, this month we focus on the specific area of maths and discuss how we can support the children in our settings.

View all Mathematics

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