Important – Don’t miss these 5 Fantastic Early Years Counting Activities for Successful counting on

There are a whole range of Early Years counting activities and it is extremely important to provide children with activities appropriate to their stage of development. Children progress through different stages of counting and depending on where they are at will determine how they approach a question that asks them how many there are in two groups e.g. 5 and 3. The stages are a follows:

  • Emergent counters – these children are unable to find the total either because they are unable to say the correct sequence of numbers or they haven’t yet developed one to one correspondence.
  • Perceptual counters – these children are able to find a total providing that there are objects that can be seen and counted, starting with the number 1.
  • Figurative counters – these children are able to find a total whether the objects can be seen or not as the children have the ability to imagine a quantity.
  • Counting-on counters – these children are able to start counting from a number other than 1 and don’t need to see the objects being counted.
  • Non-count-by-ones-counter – these children will use their knowledge of number and number patterns to find the total. They may know that double 4 is 8 and so take the one from the 5 and add it on to the three in order to use that number fact.

It is important to take these stages into consideration when planning Early Years counting activities in order to ensure that children can move on from one stage to the next. See my blog on Number sense and the number system for activities that will support the emergent counters. Also, see my blog on 3 Free EYFS Math’s Activities to Develop Number Sense for further support for the emergent, perceptual and figurative counters.

Early Years Counting Activities for Counting-on Counters

The ten frame activities in my blog 3 Free EYFS Math’s Activities will support with counting on along with the activities below.

Introduce the concept with my counting on power point or watch it as a video on YouTube.

Early Years Counting Activities

The power point consists of 13 slides and encourages the children to count on from different numbers. It demonstrates covering counters with your hand and counting on from the number covered as well as putting counters into a cup and counting on from the number in the cup.

Following on from this, all of the Early Years counting activities should be practised practically before any recording is required. Children can use their hands to cover up rows of counters and use real cups to put counters in before applying it to a worksheet. Having observed the process in the power point should help the children to replicate the activity practically. Commercially produced ten frames are available and there are some fantastic interactive games that the children can play, such as Illuminations. These games provide a range of Early Years counting activities to reinforce the counting on concept.

Once the children are confident practically with the Early Years counting activities they can progress to recording their work using the worksheets in my ‘counting on’ pack. The first one uses the hand covering concept from the power point. However, there are numbered strips of paper that can be used to cover the counters instead.

The strips at the bottom of the page need to be cut out and laminated. Children use them to cover the correct amount of counters according to the instructions. The number has been written on to support the children in counting on. In the next worksheet, the numbers have been taken off the cover ups and children are expected to remember the number that they need to count on from.

The next two worksheets have cups with the counters in them. Children count on from the number in the cup. Over each sheet the numbers get progressively bigger to challenge the children further.

The final sheet supports children in counting on with a ten frame. A number 5 has been written on the end of the top row to remind the children to count on from 5. The aim is that they will continue to remember to count on once the number 5 has been taken away.

EYFS Baseline Assessment in Maths

EYFS baseline assessment is important in order to establish the starting points of your children at the beginning on the year so that you can build on any prior learning. EYFS baseline assessment should always be done through practical activities and is quite often done through observation. However, when you have got large numbers of children in a nursery or you are in a busy reception classroom it can be difficult to do this with so many other things to do. This is why I like to use th assessment booklets which allow me to assess children both formally and informally.

I can use the booklets to record my informal observations and it also allows me to carry out more formal observations. These EYFS baseline assessment booklets also support practitioners working with children in identifying gaps and next steps, making it very clear what the focus should be.

There are two booklets, one is specifically for nursery and one for reception. The pages link to the Development Matters 2021 curriculum and have resources that can be used with them. However, where possible it is much better to use the real objects rather than a picture card, particularly for things like weight, capacity, shape and positional language.

The EYFS baseline assessment booklets can be revisited throughout the year to check for progress. Complete the booklet in different colours and a colour co-ordinated date to illustrate the progress more clearly. The booklets can be passed on to the next teacher to inform them of the gaps in learning, if there are any.

If you like these, you may also like my reading baseline assessment booklet which works in a similar way.

For even more Early Years Counting activities visit my other blog posts or my teacherspayteachers store and tes store.