Early years foundation stage: what’s new?

Hello! My name is Jess and I am the Curriculum Manager for DoodleMaths. We’re always striving to improve DoodleMaths, and recently our focus has been on expanding our new early years foundation stage (EYFS) content.

We’ve enlisted the help of teachers, created new question styles (along with over 600 questions) and tested the new content with children. Can I just say a huge thank you to our schools for their time – we love working with teachers and pupils to make DoodleMaths the very best it can be and it has been amazing to work with you all!

We’re so excited to be bringing you the new EYFS content in DoodleMaths!

Developing early number sense

Maths is an abstract subject, which can make it tricky for children to grasp. Using pictures and manipulatives can help children to understand new mathematical concepts in a real-life context. In addition, children learn through doing and being involved. This is a principle we have applied throughout our new content.

More specifically, using pictures in early maths can help children’s understanding of quantity. When children are little, it’s tricky for them to appreciate what seven objects look like compared to other numbers. Interestingly, if numbers are represented pictorially as structured dot arrangements (dice), children don’t need to count the number of dots to work out how many there are. This prevents children from becoming over-reliant on counting – subitising is used as a strategy instead. 

Find out more on our subitising blog post.

Our new question styles

Here are a few of my favourite new DoodleMaths question styles to look out for!

1. Number spot

Early years foundation stage DoodleMaths

This new question style primarily is used to help children with subitising.

Children are firstly presented with a picture of a die, for example, a die with two dots. This is shown to children for a few seconds. Shortly after, they are asked to remember what they saw. 

By only showing a picture for a brief amount of time, children will begin to instantly recognise how many objects there are. This helps them relate a number to a number of items without having to count.

2. Chop


This new question style was inspired by the syllable question style in DoodleSpell! 

It provides children with a real life, hands-on experience of halving before they begin halving a number of objects (for example, sharing an amount between two people) or halving numbers (what is half of 6?).

3. Part-part-whole


This question style creates the opportunity for children to experimentally discover the different ways that numbers can be made. In this example, four counters might be split into two and two, three and one, four and zero. This activity supports work on number bonds, addition and subtraction. 


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