St Alban's Catholic Primary School

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There are two Early Learning Goals for maths. This is what most children in Reception are expected to be able to do by the end of their first year at school.


Number ELG Children at the expected level of development will:

  •  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 up to 5 (including subtraction facts) and some number bonds to 10, including double facts.



 Numerical Patterns ELG Children at the expected level of development will:

  •  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.

It is important that children develop a really strong sense of numbers to 10. This will stand them in good stead for the maths that follows as they move through school. 

This includes

  • Understanding the link between numbers and quantity (representing numbers in many ways.) 
  • Investigating how quantities are composed of smaller parts. 
  • knowing how the numbers relate to one another and being able to compare and order them. 
  • Exploring how quantities change when you add more items or take them away. The children may already be able to recite the number names to twenty and beyond but a sense of what those numbers mean develops gradually with represented experiences in different contexts. 

How can I help at home?

• Count - steps up the stairs, money into a money box etc

• Ask children to say how many without counting (5 or fewer)

• Play games using dice/dominoes and encourage child to say how many spots without counting. • Ask children to set the table with enough knives, forks and plates for everyone.

• Spot numbers in the environment – on phones, microwaves, clocks, registration plates, doors.

• Ask children to think of their own representations for numbers eg one of them, two hands, three bears, four wheels on a car, five toes, six sides on a dice, seven dwarves, eight legs on an octopus etc

• Deliberately make mistakes. Children need to understand mistakes are normal and everyone makes them eg get mixed up when counting, muddle two numbers when ordering them.

• Watch Numberblocks on Cbeebies. This programme is written by maths specialists to model maths concepts and represents number brilliantly. Also, Numberjacks is excellent for solving problems.

• Hide numbers around the house or garden for children to find.

• Play outdoor maths games like hopscotch and skittles. Even better, let children make up their own games and decide how to score points.

• Read books with maths concepts eg The Very Hungry Caterpillar, One is a snail, ten is a crab, What’s the time, Mr Wolf? The doorbell rang.

• Draw attention to more and less.