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: ‘Ten brown cones’

Jenni Clarke provides a guide to how mathematics can be enhanced through in the moment planning, with continuous provision which helps practitioners to identify and extend learning opportunities for all children.

Maths: Animal countdown

Explore the books of David Walliams as a great resource to introduce key mathematical concepts, such as counting, writing numbers and comparing sizes. Making playdough snakes is guaranteed to be a hit.

Mathematics: Number melt down

Children's natural fascination with snow and ice provides a strong impetus for counting when practitioners weave in rhymes and use resources imaginatively. Extend this to small world play with penguins and icy landscapes.

Mathematics: Monkey Do!

The fourth part of this series linking maths and children's books focuses on Monkey Do! by Allan Ahlberg and Andre Amstutz. As the Monkey jumps from page to page, use it as an opportunity to teach children in your setting about positional language.

Mathematics: Ten in the Bed

Penny Dale's picture book featuring the popular rhyme is alive with onomatopoeia and crammed with detail, making it a great stimulus for counting backwards and learning to take away one from any number to ten.

Latest Features

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.

Start your week

Get your week off to a flying start with our suggestions for seasonal activities which embrace wet and windy weather! Don't forget to get involved with Early Years Wellbeing Week – and find out how one nursery is combating Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD).

Splish and splash

Children are often drawn to puddles. Take advantage of rainy weather to take the children outdoors to splash in the puddles and hone their mathematics skills in an entertaining way.

Glorious mud!

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!

'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.

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