What needs to happen to ensure that all children have rich mathematics learning?

This guide acknowledges and describes effective practice in services where the curriculum integrates the breadth and depth of mathematics. Children in these services experience many and varied mathematical learning experiences that respond to and extend their strengths and interests. These children are establishing sound foundations for understanding mathematical concepts that will be critical for their future learning success. 

Pedagogical leadership and teacher knowledge underpin this effective practice. Effective pedagogical leaders understand how to integrate mathematics into the curriculum to best support children's learning. Skilled teachers intentionally plan experiences to extend children's developing mathematical understandings. ERO encourages leaders and teachers to be increasingly intentional and deliberate in the way mathematics teaching builds on spontaneous child-initiated opportunities for early learning.

In supporting children to be confident and capable mathematical learners in their early years the following aspects are critical:

  • Leaders placing an emphasis on mathematics as a foundation for children's learning.
  • Leaders having a good understanding of how mathematics is implemented as part of their curriculum, including what this means for planning, assessment and internal evaluation.
  • Mathematics teaching and learning occurring in meaningful contexts as part of a holistic curriculum that covers all strands of mathematics learning appropriate to early years.
  • Teachers having sufficient in-depth subject and pedagogical knowledge to notice, recognise and respond to children's mathematical learning; making this learning visible to children, parents and whānau; responding appropriately to parental expectations and providing useful information as children transition to school.