1st Edition

How to Recognise and Support Mathematical Mastery in Young Children’s Play Learning from the 'Talk for Maths Mastery' Initiative

Edited By Di Chilvers Copyright 2022
    264 Pages 140 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    264 Pages 140 Color Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book explains how young children develop mathematically in their earliest years and shows the support and teaching needed by adults to accelerate their progress and attainment, helping them master mathematical concepts and skills.

    The practical guidance has been carefully developed over a number of years and is based on research undertaken with primary schools in Sheffield as part of the 'Talk for Maths Mastery' initiative. It recognises that children’s mathematical development is embedded within child-led play and connected to deeper levels of thinking and wider dispositions for learning. Maths is happening everywhere at any moment; we just need to keep an open mind, open eyes, and listen.

    Including case studies, links to practice and reflective questions, the chapters reveal what mastery orientation looks like from the children’s perspective in their learning and covers:

    • children’s serve and return conversational talk
    • mathematical babies and their developmental momentum
    • schematic patterns of thinking
    • mathematical mark-making
    • child-led play
    • problem solving
    • creative and critical thinking
    • how adults can support children’s mathematical talk, thinking and mastery

    This book will help all early years practitioners and teachers working with children throughout the EYFS and KS1 build their understanding, knowledge, experience and confidence of engaging in early mathematics.

    Chapter 1: What is Talk for Maths Mastery?

    Di Chilvers

    Chapter 2: Maintaining the momentum of children’s mathematical development

    Di Chilvers

    Chapter 3: What does mathematical mastery mean for young children?

    Di Chilvers

    Chapter 4: Documenting children’s mathematical talking and thinking observation, learning stories and floor books

    Katie Hulme

    Chapter 5: Building mathematical thinking through whole-class child-led learning

    Amy Parker

    Chapter 6: Making their mathematical mark: understanding and supporting children’s mathematical mark-making and thinking

    David Yates

    Chapter 7: How do adults support children’s mathematical talk, thinking and mastery?

    Kath Priestley

    Chapter 8: Maintaining children’s mathematical momentum into Year 1 – a case study

    Natalie Reilly and David Yates


    Di Chilvers is an advisory consultant, author and trainer at WatchMeGrow and the Development Map, UK.

    "With an excellent layout and indexing, appendices of ready to use practical tools, real life learning ‘stories’, and full colour photographs, this is essential reading for early years practitioners looking to develop mathematical mastery in their work with the youngest students.

    I particularly liked the concept of the ‘Maths is everywhere’ audit, encouraging adults to see that maths can happen anywhere, at any time. This book would make an excellent addition to the Continuing Professional Development library of any primary school." - Helen Emery, The School Librarian