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Cove Infant School

Growing and Achieving together

Year R

Year R


In Reception, we predominantly use the Mastering Number program for our main teaching which is designed to be very interactive and practical, using a range of resources and activities. It focuses on developing a strong number sense, which is essential for later mathematical learning, and aims to foster a positive attitude towards mathematics from an early age. Elements from White Rose Maths are also used within our continuous provision. Here is a summary of what is covered in Maths in Reception:


Number Sense

Children develop a deep understanding of numbers up to 10. They learn to recognize, count, order, and represent these numbers in various ways.



This is the ability to recognize the number of objects in a small group without counting. Children learn to subitize with numbers up to 5, using patterns such as those on dice or dominoes.


Counting Skills

Children develop counting skills, including counting objects, actions, sounds, and in different contexts. They also learn about counting forwards and backwards.


Comparing and Ordering

Children compare quantities in groups of objects, discussing more or less/fewer, and consider the order of numbers.


Composition of Numbers

This involves understanding how numbers can be made up in different ways (e.g., 5 can be 2 and 3, 4 and 1, etc.). 


Pattern and Shape

Introduction to simple patterns and shapes, where children learn to recognize, create, and describe different patterns and shapes.


Early Addition and Subtraction

Basic concepts of adding to and taking away, using practical resources and stories to bring these concepts to life.


Number Bonds

Introduction to the idea of number bonds (pairs of numbers that add up to a given number), initially up to 5 and later extending to 10.


Mathematical Language

Development of a rich mathematical vocabulary through discussions and exploratory play.


Practical Problem Solving

Engaging with real-life problems that require a mathematical solution, encouraging thinking and reasoning skills.