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Maths in Nursery and Reception

In Nursery and Reception we follow the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum (revised in September 2020) for which Maths is one of the four specific areas.

To support us with our delivery of the Maths Curriculum in Reception we follow ‘White Rose Maths’. Our aim is to provide the children with a firm foundation in Mathematics by embedding opportunities for mathematical thinking and talk, from the start of their learning journeys. We ensure that our classrooms and outdoor learning areas are ‘mathematically rich’ with easy access to Maths resources and activities that are embedded within our play-based, continuous provision.

The children’s learning is divided into ten phases across the year, which provide a variety of opportunities to develop their understanding of number, shape, measure and spatial thinking. There is a big focus on the early numbers, enabling children to develop a really strong sense of numbers to 10, which provides a solid foundation for future learning in Maths. We do ensure however, that there is challenge for all children regardless of their starting points, and regularly encourage them to ‘dig deeper’ by explaining their mathematical thinking and reasoning when solving problems and completing mathematical challenges.

New maths learning is introduced via a mix of regular short adult-led focused inputs either with the whole class or in small groups. As we know that children need frequent opportunities to revisit and rehearse new learning in order to embed it within their long term memory, we provide them with frequent opportunities to practise new skills through play, either independently or with adult support.

Maths Early Learning Goals (ELGs) to achieve by the end of Reception:


- Have a deep understanding of number to 10, including the composition of each number;

- Subitise (recognise quantities without counting) up to 5;

- Automatically recall (without reference to rhymes, counting or other aids) number bonds within 5 (including subtraction facts) and some number bonds within 10, including double facts.

Numerical Patterns:

- Verbally count beyond 20, recognising the pattern of the counting system;

- Compare quantities up to 10 in different contexts, recognising when one quantity is greater than, less than or the same as the other quantity;

- Explore and represent patterns within numbers up to 10, including evens and odds, double facts and how quantities can be distributed equally.

Maths in KS1

In Key Stage 1, we build on the foundations of maths learning in the Early Years. We aim to provide our pupils with key skills and a broad and deep understanding of mathematical concepts that develops their ability to communicate their mathematical reasoning and become critical thinkers.

The National Curriculum aims to ensure that all children:

  • Become fluent in the fundamentals of mathematics
  • Are able to reason mathematically
  • Can solve problems by applying their mathematics

At Holmesdale we aim to embed these skills by developing mathematical competency, skills and understanding across key concepts. We encourage pupils to reason and explain their answers by making connections between different mathematical concepts. We aim to develop independent problem solvers who are not afraid to take risks and challenge themselves. Our intent is to foster an enjoyment of mathematics in our pupils and create critical thinkers who are willing to accept a challenge.

We follow the White Rose Maths scheme, which enables us to cover each Maths topic in greater depth and provide children with a variety of visual representations, daily opportunities to reason and problem solve and therefore, develop deeper conceptual understanding. We regularly include ‘Flashback 4s’ into our Maths sessions, whereby children are asked 4 questions to revisit learning from the previous day, week, unit and term. This gives them the opportunity to retrieve and consolidate previous knowledge as well as develop varied fluency. All lessons start with a ‘Maths talk’ section to support the children’s development and understanding of key mathematical vocabulary. They are also regularly presented with ‘chilli’ challenges whereby they are able to choose their level of challenge and therefore take ‘responsibility’ for their learning, and have the opportunity to apply their knowledge to a range of situations.

To support White Rose we also follow the ‘Number Sense Maths’ programme which focuses solely on number and addition/ subtraction fact fluency. This is a scheme that teaches the children number facts in a systematic way and develops their ability to subitise numbers (recognise small amounts without counting), become fluent in core number facts and supports them in choosing the most efficient method when calculating.

Year 1 objectives

Year 1 objectives are taken from the National Curriculum.


Count to 100, forwards and backwards beginning with 0 or 1, or from any given number.

Count, read and write numbers to 100 in numerals.

Count in multiples of 2s, 5s and 10s.

Given a number, identify one more and one less.

Identify and represent numbers using objects and pictorial representations, including the number line, and use the language of : equal to, more than, less than (fewer), most, least.

Read and write numbers from 1 to 20 in numerals and words.

Geometry (including position and direction)

Recognise and name common 2-D and 3-D shapes, including:

  • 2-D shapes eg oblong, square, circle, triangle
  • 3-D shapes eg cube, cuboid, pyramid, sphere

Describe position, direction and movement, including whole, half, quarter and three-quarter turns, eg describing a route using language such as forward, backward, left and right.


Recognise, find and name half as 1 of 2 equal parts of an object, shape or quantity.

Recognise, find and name a quarter as 1 of 4 equal parts of an object, shape or quantity.

Addition and subtraction

Read, write and interpret mathematical statements involving addition (+), subtraction (-) and equals (=).

Represent and use number bonds and related subtraction facts within 20 eg 5+2 =7, 7-2=5, 7-5=2.

Add and subtract one-digit and two-digit numbers to 20 including 0.

Solve one-step problems than involve addition and subtraction using concrete objects and pictorial representations, and missing number problems such as 7=?-9.

Multiplication and division

Solve one-step problems involving multiplication and division, by calculating the answer using concrete objects, pictorial representations and arrays with support of the support of an adult.


Compare, describe and solve practical problems for:

  • Lengths and heights eg long/short, longer/shorter, tall/short, double/half
  • Mass/weight eg heavy/light, heavier than/lighter than
  • Capacity and volume eg full/empty, more than, less than, half, half full, quarter
  • Time eg quicker, slower, earlier, later

Measure and begin to record the following:

  • Lengths and heights
  • Mass/weight
  • Capacity and volume
  • Time (hours, minutes, seconds)

Recognise and know the value of different denominations of coins and notes.

Sequence events in chronological order using language such as after, next, first, today, yesterday, tomorrow, morning, afternoon, evening.

Recognise and use language relating to dates, including days of the week, weeks, months and years.

Tell the time to the hour and half past the hour and draw the hands on a clock face to show these times.

Year 2 objectives

Year 2 objectives are taken from the National Curriculum.

Count in steps of 2, 5 and 10, forwards and backwards.

Recognise the place value of each digit in a two-digit number (tens and ones).

Identify, represent and estimate numbers.

Compare and order numbers from 0 up to 100.

Read and write numbers up to at least 100 in numerals.

Use place value and number facts to solve problems.

Geometry (including position and direction)

Identify and describe the properties of 2-D shapes, including sides and corners.

Identify and describe the properties of 3-D shapes, including the number of edges, vertices and faces.

Identify 2-D shapes on the surface of 3-D shapes, (for example, a circle on a cylinder and a triangle on a pyramid).

Compare and sort 2-D and 3-D shapes and everyday objects.

Order and arrange combinations of mathematical objects in patterns and sequences.

Use mathematical vocabulary to describe position, direction and movement, including movement in a straight line and distinguishing between rotation as a turn and in terms of right angles as a quarter turn.


Begin to recognise, name and write fractions 1/3, 1/4, 2/4 and 3/4; of a shape.

Write simple fractions, for example 1/2 of 6 = 3.


Interpret and construct simple pictograms, tally charts, block diagrams and tables.

Ask and answer simple questions by using the information given in different charts and tables.

Addition and subtraction

Use concrete objects and pictorial representations to solve problems, mentally and on paper, with addition and subtraction including money and measures.

Read and use addition and subtraction facts to 20 fluently, and drive and use related facts up to 100 , eg 1+6 =7 so 10+60=70 or 70-10=60 and 7-1=6.

Add and subtract numbers using concrete objects, pictorial representations, and mentally including adding or subtracting one or ten to/from a two-digit number, adding and subtracting two two-digit numbers and adding three one-digit numbers.

Know and show that addition of numbers can be done in any order and that subtraction of one number from another cannot.

Recognise and use the inverse relationship between addition and subtraction and use this to check calculations and solve number problems.

Multiplication and division

Understand multiplication as repeated division and division as repeated subtraction.

Begin to use multiplication facts for 2, 5 and 10 multiplication tables.

Solve problems involving multiplication and division, using materials, arrays, repeated addition, mental methods, and if possible multiplication and division facts, including problems in context eg money and measures.



Choose and use appropriate standard units to estimate length/height in any direction (m/cm); mass (kg/g); capacity (litres/ml) to the nearest appropriate unit, using rulers, scales and measuring vessels.

Recognise and use symbols for pounds (£) and pence (p); combine amounts to make a particular value.

Find different combinations of coins that equal the same amounts of money.

Solve simple problems in a practical context involving addition and subtraction of money of the same unit, including giving change.

Tell the time using hours, half hours, and quarter hours.

Know the number of minutes in an hour and the number of hours in a day.

Long Term Plans