Early years, primary learning& teaching

These two quotes guide my teaching:

“Mathematics could be like roller-skating, 

but usually it’s like being told to stop roller-skating and come in and tidy your room.”

Richard Winter (2009) " ‘Mathophobia’, pythagoras and roller‐skating."

“There is a danger that mathematics is seen by children as something in which they learn about other people’s ideas, particularly yours, 

and it has nothing to do with them.”

Anita Straker (1993) 


Real play?

I was involved in a Twitter conversation recently in which an early years’ colleague referred to something as being “real play”. I am...

Progression or trajectory? Which is it to be?

“Recently sat through a meeting talking about children all moving towards achieving ELGs and moving through the same learning at the same...

Subitising does not end at Reception

Number bond fluency and subitising This quick blog comes from a Twitter exchange about number bond fluency on KS2 (and early KS3). I have...

Harnessing the power of story

How might picture and story books enhance the mathematical experience we offer our young children, birth to seven? This blog has been...

Automatic Recall and Executive Functioning

The latest iteration of the EYFS Framework (DfE 2020) has included some contentious changes. For mathematics these are the removal of...

Why are we so worried?

Mathematics and the new EYFS Within the two weeks leading up to the end of the most stressful and distressing school year we have ever...

2 counting games - for school and home

Two counting and reasoning games to play in Reception over the next few weeks, that children can also play at home Obviously, all our...

Where is that b. article?

I have decided I ought to collect together all my most recent pieces of writing for various organisations, that are available online, to...

Play-based mathematics and safety

Several things have come together this morning for me to be able to write this blog. · Firstly, a request that has been sitting in my...

On learning nothing.

(Learning nothing?) In re-visiting my blogs of the last 3 years I realise I owe a debt to Dylan William, whose often controversial tweets...

Scripting lessons – surely not?

(Playing Mancala with homemade playing bases ) The issue of 'scripted lessons' crops up from time-to-time. I originally posted this blog...

On being ready

This blog begun life as series of tweets, in June 2019. Are you ready for school? Are you ready for tea? Are you ready to go out? Are you...


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