Maths for young children has nothing to do with sums, figures, tables or adding & subtracting. These will all come much later. Maths is really part of the language a child uses in understanding and talking about things in their daily experiences e.g.
• Colours – black, white, red, green. Etc.
• Prepositions (telling positions); over/under, before/after, inside/ourside etc.
• Matching/Sorting – Objects of the same size/colour/texture/shape etc.
• Odd one out – difference in size/colour/shape etc
How you can help
• In the course of your ordinary daily routine in the home, shop, playground and in the neighbourhood you could try to use suitable opportunities to casually introduce the maths vocabulary referred to above, e.g. How many cakes? The glass is full/empty. We turn left at the lights, we go down the slide etc.
• Children associate certain numbers with particular things – two hands, four wheels, five fingers etc.
• Counting – one, two, three, four etc.
• Setting the table.
• Drawing attention to shapes in the home and the environment.
• The child’s understanding of Maths is best developed by handling, investigating and using real objects. This has been their natural method of learning since infancy.
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