February 13, 2023
The importance of Early Years maths
Solving the maths crisis
According to government statistics, approximately 8 million adults in England, ‘have the numeracy skills of primary schoolchildren.’ (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/prime-minister-sets-ambition-of-maths-to-18-in-speech, 2023).
With a post-Covid research project putting the cost of low numeracy skills at as much as £25 billion per year, this has been an area of focus for Prime Minister, Rishi Sunak, since he was Chancellor.
However, his recent announcement that every child should study maths until they are 18 has provoked criticism and debate, particularly amongst the teaching profession – who already face such intense pressure.
The importance of maths from an early age
As former teachers, team Cubie agree on the vital importance of maths – but we feel strongly that the focus should be investing in the early years – getting it right at the start of the journey. If the right investment, measures and approaches are put in place from the beginning, by the time children are 16 they have every chance of being at the standard they need to be to flourish in the working world. Therefore, there may not be the need to pursue maths beyond 16. Indeed, since 2010, ‘The government’s focus on literacy, including phonics, has led to significant improvements in standards. In 2012, only 58% of 6-year-olds were able to read words fluently. By 2019, the figure had risen to 82%. Our renewed focus on numeracy will aim to match this achievement.’ (https://www.gov.uk/government/news/prime-minister-sets-ambition-of-maths-to-18-in-speech, 2023). However, we are wondering to what extent the government’s latest plan is focusing on maths in the early years?
The Princess of Wales’ early childhood campaign
We were delighted to read the recent work of The Princess of Wales in regards to early years education. The Princess of Wales explains the importance of early childhood experiences and its importance for later on in life. The new early childhood campaign aims to ‘give generations of children the best start in life.’ (https://royalfoundation.com/, 2023).
What Cubie is doing to help
Here at Cubie we are determined to support parents and children with their maths from the very beginning. The consistent reinforcement of 10-15 minutes per day ensures that the basics are understood without overwhelming the child – giving them the foundations they need to succeed. As a result, confidence grows, allowing children to develop new skills whilst being engaged. Maths is not something to be feared. Taught in the right way, and with a consistent approach, it can be fun and fulfilling!
Little and often
Cubie’s ethos of ‘little and often’ is proven to work. Schools consistently push this ethos about reading – why not maths? Cubie is an award-winning subscription box, full of fun and engaging screen-free maths. We have been overwhelmed by the positive response from parents (and their children) who love the workbooks, stickers and reward charts. Parents are often surprised at how engaged their children are in the maths and are even more surprised when their children say when they get home from school, ‘please can I do my Cubie!’.