Nursery Maths

Within this Area of Learning there are 2 Aspects

LEARNING OBJECTIVES 30-50 month band



  • Uses some number names and number language spontaneously.
  • Uses some number names accurately in play.
  • Recites numbers in order to 10.
  • Knows that numbers identify how many objects are in a set.
  • Beginning to represent numbers using fingers, marks on paper or pictures.
  • Sometimes matches numeral and quantity correctly.
  • Shows curiosity about numbers by offering comments or asking questions.
  • Compares two groups of objects, saying when they have the same number.
  • Shows an interest in number problems.
  • Separates a group of three or four objects in different ways, beginning to recognise that the total is still the same.
  • Shows an interest in numerals in the environment.
  • Shows an interest in representing numbers.
  • Realises not only objects, but anything can be counted, including steps, claps or jumps

Shape, Space and Measures

  • Shows an interest in shape and space by playing with shapes or making arrangements with objects.
  • Shows awareness of similarities of shapes in the environment.
  • Uses positional language.
  • Shows interest in shape by sustained construction activity or by talking about shapes or arrangements.
  • Shows interest in shapes in the environment.
  • Uses shapes appropriately for tasks.
  • Beginning to talk about the shapes of everyday objects, e.g. ‘round’ and ‘tall’.

In Nursery we provide children with opportunities to develop and improve their skills in counting, understanding and using numbers, introducing and practising simple calculating  and problem solving. We also make provision to support the describing of Shapes, Space and Measures.

During the Autumn term we encourage the children’s interest in numbers and counting. This is done through giving children a reason to count through day to day activities, e.g. by asking them to select the correct number of straws for a given number of children during milk time, counting children that are here today, through songs, rhymes and stories e.g 5 little ducks, 1,2,3,4,5 and 5 little leaves and  role play situations e.g taking enough sandwiches on a picnic, helping mummy duck find al her ducklings and counting candles on cakes. We teach the children the keys skills to support counting e.g saying the number names in order and pointing at the items they are counting.  We provide real situations through role play and problem solving that give children opportunities to develop and improve their skills and understanding of counting and use of numbers.

Top Marks Counting website – 1,2,3,4,5

Further information on developing early number skills can be found here.

We also explore and play with shapes and objects introducing language relating to shapes, measures and sizes through activities such as cooking, junk modelling, sand and water play and free access to a variety of construction play. In these areas language of shape, space and measure can be modelled, rehearsed and extended through adult and child interactions. The Environment is organised to foster shape matching e.g. pictures of different bricks on containers to show where they are kept and through ensuring items are replaced on the correct Silhouette as seen in the home corner or music station.

F1b Maths F1c Maths  

Ideas to support your child with Maths skills can be found below:

10 Activities to Develop Maths Skills