About cookies

The NCETM site uses cookies. Read more about our privacy policy

Please agree to accept our cookies. If you continue to use the site, we'll assume you're happy to accept them.


Personal Learning Login

Sign Up | Forgotten password?
Register with the NCETM

Effective Practice : Early Years : Mathematics-specific Pedagogy

Key Stage
Key Stage

Next Question

Enter the Self-evaluation Tools
Self-evaluation Tools
Currently viewing
Early Years
Effective Practice
Question 1 of 12

1. How confident are you that you can give all children the best opportunities for effective development and learning in mathematics?

a. Taking into account child development?


Young children’s physical development is rapid in their first two years of life. They use their hands and feet to explore all manner of environments; their awareness of shape becomes apparent as they recognise different objects by feel and texture. At this age children enjoy touching and looking at the many feely books that are published. A good resource is to provide collections of different objects with a similar theme, such as smooth and shiny things or a basket of round things or different sized balls. Any adults that are supporting the children will need to know and use the mathematical language to describe the objects.

Children will not all progress through the different areas of mathematics sequentially or at the same rate or at the same time. For instance, a child who has a lot of experience of using construction materials such as bricks and plastic building sets will have a greater familiarity and possible understanding of properties of shape and be less familiar with numbers and calculating. A child who has been helping the family count money or play board games might be advanced numerically but have little understanding about shape and space and measures. The starting point for all of the children’s planned mathematical learning will be what the child already knows and can do.

Related information and resources from other sites

Add to your NCETM favourites
Remove from your NCETM favourites
Add a note on this item
Recommend to a friend
Comment on this item
Send to printer
Request a reminder of this item
Cancel a reminder of this item