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Primary School

Nursery Counting Skills

Here you will find information on 'the five principles of counting'. 

Accurate counting is an essential skill for children to learn from an early age. Although this may seem straightforward, there are many counting concepts that young children need to master in order to become effective lifelong mathematicians. 

When a young child begins counting, they count by rote, meaning they will be able to say the number names in order simply because they have remembered the words and the order they go in. From this starting point, children then need to begin to master five counting principles.

Remembering the names of the principles is not essential. The important part is understanding what the 5 different skills are and supporting your child to master each of them. As always, we are here to help so please do get in touch if you would like any ideas or guidance.

We have attached a longer document that explains the principles in detail. There is also a shorter document for use at a quick glance and the links to the videos can be found below.

The Nursery Team 😊


The One-One Principle 


The Stable Order Principle


The Cardinal Principle


 The Abstraction Principle


The Order-Irrelevance Principle