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Year 3 Maths Mental-Oral Starters – FREE

Ruth Merttens By Ruth Merttens

Get your maths lesson going with a bang!

Each term, we provide 48 starters – enough for 4 per week for 12 weeks – plus a set of 12 ‘Fun-Fair Friday’ tests.
Starters are categorised under key mathematical skillssee headings below. In each download, expect starters further down the list to get slightly harder. Most starters include a couple of quite challenging questions!
Starters with an E at the end of the download filename are easier, as they revisit skills from Year 2 or from previous terms.

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Place value and number
Place numbers on a line, place value calculations and rounding

Children practise locating any number on a landmarked 0-1000 line; in Spring and Summer, they apply understanding to compare and order numbers. They write numbers in response to images for hundreds, tens and ones, and fill in missing numbers in place value calculations. They revise rounding numbers to the nearest 10 or 100.

Autumn: Exploring 3-digit place value (3) | Placing numbers on a line (4) | Rounding (3)
Spring: Placing numbers on a line (4) | PV additions/subtractions (4) | Rounding (3)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Number bonds and next 10
Number facts in adding and subtracting

Addition and subtraction facts are rehearsed, including number bonds for 10 and 20, and pairs of numbers which total all numbers up to 20. Bonds to 10 are applied to add to the next multiple of 10 in 2- and 3-digit numbers. Occasional ‘tricky’ questions challenge children to go beyond simple number fact recall.

Autumn: Addition facts (10) | Subtraction facts (2)
Spring: Number bonds & next 10 (5)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Mental addition/subtraction
Mental strategies to add and subtract, including use of money

Children practise mentally adding two 2-digit numbers. They use their knowledge of place value to decide whether to count on or partition and re-combine. They add and subtract 1s, 10s, or 100s to/from 2- and 3-digit numbers and extend this to add/subtract 1ps, 10ps and £s to/from amounts of money. They also rehearse mental strategies to find a difference, counting up from the smaller to the larger number.

Autumn: +/- 2-digit numbers (3) | +/- 1s, 10s, 100s (2) | +/- 1ps, 10ps, £1s (1)
Spring: +/- 2-digit numbers (6) | +/- 1, 10, 100 (2) | +/- multiples of 1, 10, 100 (3)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Doubling and halving
Double numbers to 50 and halve even numbers <100

Children rehearse known facts, e.g. double 6 is 12 and half of 18 is 9. They also practise mental calculations that may involve partitioning, e.g. half of 34 or double 26.

Autumn: Doubling numbers (2) | Halving numbers (1)
Spring: Doubling numbers (2) | Halving numbers (2)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Times tables
Practise multiplication and division facts

Starters will either focus on one table or draw on wider knowledge by revisiting several. As the year advances, division facts are increasingly rehearsed, either on their own or alongside multiplication. The 2x, 3x, 5x and 10x tables are covered in Autumn. The 4s and 8s are introduced in Spring and revisited in Summer. Division with remainders is introduced in Spring and revised in Summer. All tables are learned to the 12th multiple.

Autumn: Multiplication facts (8) | Division facts (2) | Spotting multiples (2)
Spring: Multiplication facts-Multiples-Division (10)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Equivalent fractions
Match pairs or threes of equivalent fractions

Children look carefully at sets of fractions and identify those which belong to the same ‘fraction-family’, e.g. identifying 3/6 and 5/10 as equivalent to 1/2. These ‘fraction families’ include halves, thirds, quarters and fifths. Calculations to find simple fractions of amounts are applied in Spring.

Autumn: Equivalent fractions (2)
Spring: Equivalent fractions (2)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Convert measures
Recall equivalent SI measures; apply place value calculations to convert measures

Children recall the equivalence between measures of length (metres and centimetres) or weight (kilograms and grams) or capacity (litres and millilitres).

Autumn: N/A
Spring: Convert Measures (3)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Telling the time
Accurately tell the time; calculate intervals and durations

Children identify the correct time on analogue clocks, then find digital time displays to match. As the year advances, children rehearse telling the time with increasing accuracy on both analogue and digital clocks. By the end of the Summer, they tell the time to the nearest minute, mentally calculate simple time intervals and compare durations of events.

Autumn: Telling the time (3)
Spring: Tell the time (2)
Summer: Coming soon!


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Testing children’s basic skills rehearsed in Starters

The tests each have ten questions and are fun to do as children compete not against each other, but against their personal best. Each week, they see where they have got to on the Fun-Fair Height Chart – which rides will they be able to do?
Choose a test to fit the Starters you have done this week.
Download the Tests Overview to make your choice.