There are so many opportunities for practising maths concepts at home and in the community. Counting is a complex skill and your child will need to understand some general maths concepts before being ready to move on to counting and calculations. It is a good idea to support your child by using mathematical language to comment on their actions and explore these ideas in real-world contexts.

Some of the concepts and keywords you might want to explore are:

  • Now and next
  • Filling and emptying containers, fitting shapes in to shape sorters or inset puzzles
  • Stacking and building (on and off)
  • Big and small
  • Matching and sorting colour
  • More, one and lots
  • Sorting by shape, size and type
  • Using positional language in a range of contexts (over, under, in, out etc)
  • Counting and using numbers in sequence
  • Ordering objects by size, length or height
  • Heavy and light
  • Making repeating patterns

Here are some activity ideas in everyday situations:

As well as being good for learning life skills, helping with the laundry can be a great way to practice some maths concepts! Count items, fill and empty the basket, find pairs, match colours and patterns and sort big and small items.

There are lots of opportunities for learning maths concepts outdoors in a garden or green space. You could learn about ‘full’ and ’empty’ with plant pots, count seeds into the soil, find big and small leaves or flowers and practice some positional language.

Sorting is great for developing an understanding of mathematical language. If you have some toy animals, why not try sorting them into big and small? You can sort all kinds of objects, try sorting by size, colour type or shape. Great for helping with tidying up too!

Building and construction activities are fun for practising the positional language. At home you could try Lego, junk modelling, balancing natural objects and stacking cardboard boxes. Comment on the position as you build to learn lots of keywords.

You can also find out about how we use Heuristic play to support mathematical development here.


Maths websites
Maths Symbols