Arbourthorne Community Primary School

Arbourthorne Community Primary School

'... a place of joy, inclusivity and learning' OfSTED 2022

We Master Mathematics in Early Years

We teach mastery for maths. Mastering maths means that pupils acquire a deep, long-term, secure and adaptable understanding of the subject. 


Achieving mastery means acquiring a solid enough understanding of the maths that’s been taught to enable pupils to move on to more advanced material. 

In order to achieve mastery of maths in our Foundation Stage, children access, through their play, resources which promote mathematical thinking. Through practical activities, children make links between their mathematical learning and everyday life.  

They will see and use symbols, develop new mathematical language, use both pictures and manipulative resources to support their understanding.

There are six key areas of early mathematics learning, which collectively provide a platform for everything children will encounter as they progress through their maths learning at primary school, and beyond.

Children embed and master their knowledge and understanding of number, shape, space and measure through play by:

  • Singing of number songs with props 
  • Playing with concrete objects 
  • Using number frames
  • Exploring using water, sand, blocks, construction, and other sensory experiences. 
  • Participating in role play where maths is mastered through ‘real life’ experiences

Following on from National Centre of excellence for the Training of Mathematics (NCTEM) professional development, experienced and knowledgeable colleagues support and challenge deeper mathematical thinking through:

  • modelling mathematical thinking out loud 
  • modelling using mathematical manipulatives to demonstrate and deepen understanding
  • widening mathematical vocabulary by using correct terms and developing understanding of these new words