Reception maths curriculum

What to expect from the Reception maths curriculum and how to help your kiddos before they start Year 1.

Author
Doodle Team

Published
July 2024

Reception maths curriculum

What to expect from the Reception maths curriculum and how to help your kiddos before they start Year 1.

Author
Doodle Team

Published
July 2024

Reception maths curriculum

What to expect from the Reception maths curriculum and how to help your kiddos before they start Year 1.

Author
Doodle Team

Published
July 2024

Key Takeaways

• The Reception maths curriculum is designed to establish a concrete foundation of numbers 1-10, including patterns, number bonds, and doubles, as well as, encourage spatial reasoning skills through the subjects of shape and measure.
• It’s vital children learn through play and their natural interests at this age.
• Two assessments are given during Reception year–a baseline assessment at the start and a profile that’s shared with parents and Year 1 teachers at the conclusion.

The Reception maths curriculum is a foundational part of a child’s education, laying the groundwork for future success in mathematics.

Designed for children aged 4-5 years old, Reception is both the last year of the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and first formal year of schooling. All schools and chilcare providers in England must follow the EYFS. Early year standards in Scotland and Wales vary slightly from England.

This guide delves into the key components of the Reception maths curriculum, helping parents and educators support their young learners effectively.

Key goals of the Reception maths curriculum

The Reception maths curriculum emphasises practical and playful learning experiences that nurture mathematical understanding as children explore the world of numbers, shapes, and patterns. Children are taught primarily through games and play.

The primary objective of Reception maths is to develop a strong understanding of numbers 1 to 10 and spatial reasoning skills through shapes and measurement.

ELGs (Early Learning Goals) are used to measure how well children grasp the objectives of the Reception maths curriculum.

Reception mathematic ELGs

Children are expected to:

• Count verbally to 20
• Recognise patterns in numbers up to 10. This includes knowing evens and odds
• Subitise up to 5
• Recall number bonds up to 5, and in some cases 10. This includes subtraction and doubles
• Compare quantities using verbiage like “less than” and “greater than” up to 10

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Strategies to support Reception maths learning

Parents and educators play a crucial role in a child’s early maths education. Creating a positive and encouraging environment where children feel confident to explore and make mistakes is essential. Regular communication between parents and teachers ensures that children receive consistent support and reinforcement of mathematical concepts both at school and at home.

The Department of Education encourages practitioners to use some of the following approaches:

1. Encourage play: The best thing you can do is incorporate maths into daily play. Children benefit from both guided play and leading their own play.
2. Stimulate interests: Do your best to encourage interests the child is already showing. For example, building blocks, puzzles, and sorting games to reinforce counting and shape recognition.
3. Curate routines: Curating consistent routines for play and learning guides children’s development as they learn and grow. Routines are most effective when coupled with positive interactions.

Assessment

Assessments are crucial for understanding a child’s progress and can be used to better support their needs. While teachers will constantly provide ongoing assessment in their daily interactions with your child, there are two “formal” assessments taken during Reception year.

The first is given at the start of Reception sometime during the first six weeks. It’s called the Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA). The RBA is designed to provide an on-entry assessment of a child’s attainment. It is not designed to measure how well their pre-school was or even for a deep dive into the child’s area of development. Rather, it is designed to capture the progress level of the entire cohort from the start of Reception through the end of KS2.

The second assessment is given at the end of Reception year, no later than the 30th of June. This is called the Early Years Foundation Stage Profile (EYFSP). The Profile provides a snapshot of a child’s understanding and abilities, their achievement against expected ELGs, and their readiness for Year 1. Parents will be informed of their child’s results and a copy of the EYFSP will be given to the child’s Year 1 teacher.

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In conclusion

The Reception maths curriculum is a vital step in a child’s educational journey. By focusing on numbers, shapes, and patterns through engaging and practical activities, children develop a strong mathematical foundation. Parents and educators can significantly enhance this learning process by integrating maths into everyday life and fostering a positive, supportive atmosphere for young learners.

Understanding and actively participating in the Reception maths curriculum not only prepares children for future academic challenges but also helps them develop a lifelong love for mathematics.

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