Foundations of Mathematics in the Early Years!

In the early years learning to count  and sort is one of your most important skills. Children can do this in everyday activities, by helping parents/gaurdians with house work, shopping, by sorting the fruit from the vegetables, sorting the dark colours of clothes to light. One of my sons favourite activities is to sort the colours of his small matchbox cars.

Lets look at 4 ways we can implement counting at home with our children.

1. Cars theme

As mentioned my son loves cars, we seem to have different sizes, colours, makes and models. So we break it down to size. Count how many are in each pile, then try to write the number on a post it note. Then break it colour again do the same activity. In the end we have post it notes that we have to add together 2 + 2 + 3+1 = 8

2. Duplo

Building combing construction and counting is always fun we first sort the bricks to colours then start to build  could be a garage, tall building, animals, whatever he chooses. Then we look at how many bricks and what colours we are using. Whilst we are playing and having fun. We are learning key skills in counting, sorting, communication, social and emotional skills by describing, sharing and generally playing.

3. Cooking

Making basic butter biscuits this is a favourite as we get a little messy, learn to measure and enjoy yummy biscuits at the end! This activity is great it allows the children to learn through their senses by touching, smelling, tasting, hearing. Also communication as they need to listen and communicate on what is happening whilst you are cooking together.

Recipe from all recipes.co.uk 

Ingredients is as follows:

  • 225g butter, softened
  • 110g caster sugar
  • 275g plain flour

Method
Prep:15min  ›  Cook:10min  ›  Ready in:25min 

  • Preheat oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
  • Cream the butter in a large bowl or in a food mixer until soft. Add the sugar and beat until the mixture is light and fluffy.
  • Sift in the flour and spices or grated zest (if using) and bring the mixture together to form a dough.
  • Using your hands,roll the dough into walnut-size balls and place them slightly apart on a baking tray. Flatten them slightly and bake in the oven for 13-15 minutes or until they are a light golden brown and slightly firm on top.
  • Carefully transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool.

4.  Jewellery making or as we like to say with boys making superhero bracelets

Pasta beading, this is a fun activity, we buy coloured pasta and count the colours and sort into size and colours then thread it onto a piece of string. Then we make patterns and count the number of pieces of pasta on the string. Once its done we either wear it as a superhero bracelet. very easy and simply, works on your fine motor skills, mathematics, language and many more skills.

There are many more activities which I would love to hear about please share and we can innovate the way children learn.

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