Year 2

Helping your
child with
In Year 2
Helping your child with Maths
Try to make maths as much fun as possible - games, puzzles and
jigsaws are a great way to start. It's also important to show how we
use maths skills in our everyday lives and to involve your child in
this. Don't shy away from maths if you didn’t like it at school. Try to
find new ways to enjoy the subject with your child. Here are some
Help your child to count beyond 20 by counting steps as you walk to
school. Try starting at a multiple of 10 (10, 20, 30, 40 etc.) and help
your child to count on.
You could also count steps in 2s, 5s or 10s to help your child learn
these times tables.
Children also need to be able to count backwards to help them with
subtraction. Try starting at 20 and count backwards with each step
you take. Once your child can confidently count back from 20, try
bigger numbers to start from.
Another challenge is to count back in 2s. Start at 20 and count back
in 2s as you walk. Move on to counting back in 10s and 5s when you
feel your child is ready.
Number Recognition
Help your child to learn to recognise numbers. Point out numbers
you see in everyday activities, such as numbers on packets or prices,
car number plates, house or bus numbers.
Your child now needs to recognise all 2 digit numbers.
More number work
Make some 2 digit number cards. Ask your child to read the number.
• Can your child write the 2 digit number?
• Ask your child to put the numbers in order, from smallest to
25 47 61 89 93
• How many tens are in the number? How many units? This is
called partitioning.
This is called
‘partitioning’ a
(4 tens)
(7 units)
Roll 2 dice/ pick 2 numbers out of a hat. Ask your child to put the
bigger number first. Help them add the two numbers together by
counting on.
If you roll a 3 and a 6, put the 6 first.
Encourage your child to put the
number 6 in their head, then count on
3 more. So, they will say 6, and count
on 7,8,9. Children often want to count
all the spots. Emphasise that we don’t
need to count the first 6, we can start
from this number and count on.
Once your child can add together 2 single digit numbers, move on
to rolling 3 dice.
Make a target game
Place three or four empty boxes in the floor. Label each box with a
number between 1 and 10. Encourage your child to help you to
make up rules for the game. How many paper balls can you throw
in a turn? How many does the winner of the game need to score
Playing skittles
Make a set of skittles using ten cardboard tubes
which can be knocked over with a soft ball. Score
1 for every skittle knocked over. Move on to
scoring 2 for every skittle knocked over and help
your child count in 2s. Also try scoring 5 and 10
for every skittle.
Adding 10
Use the 100 square below to help your child to add 10 to a 2 digit
number. Throw a counter onto the 100 square and ask your child to
say what number it has landed on. Ask them to find the number
which is 10 more. Encourage them to describe what has happened to
the number (the number in the 10s column has got bigger by 1).
Encourage your child to recognise the ‘quick’ way of adding 10. They
do not need to count on 10, they can simply move to the number
below the one they landed on. Once they understand this, they are
ready to add a multiple of 10. (10/20/30/40/50/60/70/80/90.)
Subtracting 10
You can use the 100 square to subtract 10 and multiples of 10. Ask
your child to explain how they could subtract 10. Encourage them to
recognise that they need to look at the number above the one they
landed on. They can then move on to subtracting multiples of 10.
Adding 2 digit numbers
When your child can partition confidently, move on to using this skill
to add numbers together. Start by using 2 digit numbers with a
number below 5 in the units column, like the example below.
24 + 32
Partition the numbers:
Add the tens:
Add the units:
20 + 30 = 50
4 + 2 = 6
Combine the answers:
50 + 6 = 56
Adding 2 digit numbers using a number line
Your child needs to put the largest number at the far left of the
number line, partition the second number into tens and units and
then jump on the tens number, followed by the number of units.
Number Bonds to 10
Playing skittles
Make a set of skittles using ten cardboard tubes which can be
knocked over with a soft ball. After each throw talk about the score:
There were ten skittles and we knocked over 6. There are 4 left
standing up. 6 and 4 make 10.
Number bond dice games
Roll a die. Ask your child what number goes with the number rolled
to make 10.
0 + 10 = 10
6 + 4 = 10
1 + 9 = 10
7 + 3 = 10
2 + 8 = 10
8 + 2 = 10
3 + 7 = 10
9 + 1 = 10
4 + 6 = 10
10 + 0 = 10
5 + 5 = 10
What we are aiming for is immediate recall of number bonds to 10.
You could play the “I say, you say” game. You say a number below 10
and your child has to give you the number bond that goes with it to
make 10, as quickly as possible. ( I say 4, you say ___). Your child
says 6.
Number Bonds to 20
Use a set of 20 objects to help
your child learn number bonds to
20. Start with 10 + 10. Tell your
child to move one counter over to
the other side. How many are on
each side now? 9 + 11. Challenge
your child to find as many
different ways to make 20 as
possible, by adding 2 numbers
0 + 20 = 20
1 + 19 = 20
2 + 18 = 20
3 + 17 = 20
4 + 16 = 20
5 + 15 = 20
6 + 14 = 20
7 + 13 = 20
8 + 12 = 20
9 + 11 = 20
10 + 10 = 20
11 + 9 = 20
Choose a 2 digit number card and roll a dice. Write down the number
25 – 6 = 19
Encourage your child to put the larger number in their head and
count back. Remind your child that we don’t say the number we start
on. So, for the above number sentence, your child would put 25 in
their head and say 24, 23, 22, 21, 20, 19.
Subtraction using a number line
Choose two, 2 digit number cards. Ask your child to put the largest
number first and write the number sentence:
45– 22 = 23
Your child needs to draw a line and write the biggest number at the
far right of the line. Jump back 20 and then jump back another 2. To
use this method, your child needs to be able to partition and
subtract multiples of 10 confidently. These skills are also described in
this booklet.
Introduce your child to doubling numbers by using 2 sets of objects
of the same size:
Double 3 equals 6. 3 + 3 = 6. Start with numbers up to 5 and then
progress to numbers up to 10. The aim is for your child to be able to
recall doubles up to double 10 instantly. This requires lots of
Near doubles
When your child can double numbers up to 10, move on to near
doubles, e.g. 6 + 7. Double 7 is 14. We then need to subtract 1,
because we are finding 6 + 7.
Your child needs to learn that halving is the inverse of doubling. You
can undo doubling by halving. Demonstrate this by giving your child
5 buttons. Ask them to double the number. They now have 10. Ask
them to halve the number and they will be back to the number
they started with.
Your child will learn two different ways of thinking about division:
sharing and grouping. If you have 10 sweets, and share them
between 2 people, each person gets 5 sweets – this is sharing. If you
have 10 sweets and put them in groups of 2, you will get 5 groups –
this is grouping. With both ideas it is important to see the link with
multiplication – in this case, 2 people have 5 sweets each, making 10
sweets altogether, or 5 groups of 2 make 10. Children should do lots
of sharing and grouping with apparatus, before they do any written
division work. Below are some models and images to help your child
understand multiplication and division:
Give your child some pebbles/buttons/grapes etc. and ask them to
share them fairly between 2 circles.
Give your child some pebbles/buttons/grapes etc. and ask them to
put them in groups of 2:
2D Shape
Talk about the different shapes around the home and when you are
out walking. (Circle/square/triangle/rectangle/pentagon/ hexagon/
3D Shape
Ask your child what a 3D shape is. It is one which you can hold in
your hand. 2D shapes are flat. Look for 3D shapes everywhere you
go. You could take photographs and make a 3D shape book. The
most common 3D shapes are shown below:
triangular prism
square based
triangle based
In year 2 we focus on o’ clock and half past, quarter to the hour and
quarter past the hour.
Select 3 different size and shape containers – mugs/bottles/glasses
etc. Ask your child which one they think holds the most water. Test
this by seeing how many times you have to fill that container to fill a
saucepan. You could record your results in a table.
How many to fill the saucepan?
Plastic beaker
Tea cup
Talk to your child about the shape of the containers. Did the tallest
one hold the most water?
When you go shopping there are many opportunities for helping
your child with maths. Let them handle money and help them to
recognise the coins.
Ask your child to give you 20p. Ask your child if that is the only way
to make 20p. What other ways are there?
Once your child is used to investigating making 20p in different
ways, move on to a bigger number.
Give your child £1. Set up a shop where everything costs less than
£1. Let your child ‘buy’ something from the shop and ask them how
much change they need.
If you weigh foods when shopping or baking, share with your child
how you read the scales. Encourage them to have a go at reading
the scales for themselves.
Balancing scales
Balancing scales can be used for a variety of activities. Children can
simply compare the weight of various objects and put them in order
of weight. They could also try to make them balance by making the
weights equal on both sides.
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