For those who are struggling to get your child to count from 1-10 or even look at a number; Here are some great ideas to help your child learn through play. You can support their maths skills without them even realising how much they are learning. *Do not leave children unattended*
Maths in the garden (These can also be adapted to do inside too!)
Making dens Your child/ren could use loose planks of wood, pegs and materials such as old sheets and towels. If you don’t have planks of wood use chairs, a table, an airer or even the washing line instead! Believe it or not your child/ren will be exploring size, scale, capacity, length and height. There may also be a degree of problem solving too.
Water play They can get busy with water play by using different sized buckets, bowls, jugs and watering cans. Different sizes and depths will allow your child/ren to explore capacity through lifting and transporting quantities of water from one bucket to the next.
Sand Play If you are lucky enough to have play sand at home, you can also use sand play to look at quantity and height. Use buckets and pots to explore shapes and sizes by using sand moulds.
If you have guttering or tubes, these can also help with sizing, counting and problem solving. Why not use these kind of objects to challenge your child/ren to build a bridge from one point to another?
Talking Talk about what you see in the garden, or during your daily walk. It could be finding a cobweb, bugs found on the ground or even a plane in the sky. Talking could help your child/ren understand about size, length, height (aeroplane) or amount, quantity and shape (cobweb and bugs
Number Games Hula hooping, ball games, throwing bean bags into a box, skittles (you could use empty plastic milk bottles and write numbers on each skittle) and hopscotch.All of these activities will assist with your child’s counting. The hopscotch game and skittles will also help with number recognition.
A tally chart could also be made up, either by chalking on the patio area or use pen and paper. Children love to see how many points they have won.
Encourage & get involved Encourage your child and support them. Get involved and help them. Throughout this, continue to talk to your child to extend their language, vocabulary and thinking process.
Ask open ended questions, such as ‘How will that fit together?’ ‘What else do you think we need?’ ‘What happens next?’ Try and stay clear from question that only require yes and no answers. It allows a child to learn and explore and think for themselves.