Maths Year 1/2 Autumn Measures

Each unit has everything you need to teach a set of related skills and concepts.

Unit 1 Comparing and measuring lengths (suggested as 3 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Use decimetre strips or rods as uniform unit to measure a child’s height. Show Y2 that each rod is a standard unit (dm).
Further Teaching with Y1
Model using cubes as a uniform unit. Use cubes to measure the height of a chair. Record height of different objects in cubes.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Estimate and measure objects using cubes or rulers.
Y2 -- Measure heights/ objects using decimetre strips or rods.

Day 2 Teaching
Estimate and measure length using a uniform unit (beads). Use a 20-bead string to measure a child’s hand span. Compare and order different hand spans.
Further Teaching with Y2
Show that a decimetre is 10cm. Measure your foot using cm.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Measure lengths using a bead string.
Y2 -- Measure hand spans and shoe sizes in centimetres, using decimetre strips.

Day 3 Teaching
Show a metre stick. Use metre sticks to estimate and measure the length or width of the hall.
Further Teaching with Y2
Demonstrate how to measure objects with a ruler. Use 30cm rulers to measure in centimetres and metres. Show that a ruler is 3dm
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation for this unit – Make a stick – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activity below.
Y1 -- Suggest and find objects more and less than 1m.
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation for this unit – Fanned Fingers – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activity below.
Y2 -- Estimate then measure objects and distances in centimetres.

You Will Need

  • 1cm cubes
  • Decimetre strips (see resources)
  • Items to measure (including a straight-sided tray)
  • Rulers (30cm), 20-bead string and sticky notes
  • An outline drawing of the teacher’s foot
  • Modelling clay, string and 100-bead strings
  • A5 sheets of paper
  • ‘Shoe lengths’ sheet (see resources)
  • Metre sticks and hoops
  • ‘Measuring classroom objects’ sheet (see resources)
  • Additional activity sheets (see resources)
  • Record of children’s heights from Day 1
  • Toy cars, cardboard/plank and books for ramp

Short Mental Workouts

Day 1
Numbers before and after

Day 2
How many?

Day 3
Which unit?


Day 1
Y1: Estimate the length of snakes and measure them in cubes
Y2: Measure items or lines in decimetres.

Day 2
Y1: Estimate and measure items, in beads.
Y2: Measure classroom objects, in centimetres.

Day 3
Y1: Sort items into more or less than 1m.
Y2: Create a spiral.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving

Y1 and Y2

  • Draw a fairly wiggly line of about 4 decimetres in length. Lay a piece of damp string along it. Straighten the string.
    Y1 How many cubes long is it?
    Y2 How many centimetres long is it?


  • Find a book which is…
    (a) 9 cubes long
    (b) more than 16 cubes long
    (c) between 10 and 12 cubes long


  • Estimate how long each of these creatures is in centimetres, nose to tip of tail.
    (a) a mouse
    (b) a worm
    (c) a gold fish in a bowl
    Use an online resource to check.

Y1 In-depth Investigation: Make a Stick
Children find a collection of items which in total measure exactly 1m in length.

Y2 In-depth Investigation: Fanned Fingers
Children work together to first estimate and then find an accurate measurement of the distance around their hand with the fingers ‘fanned out’ or splayed wide.

Extra Support

Y1: Tall Towers
Comparing two numbers up to 10 and compare heights

Y2: Teddy Long Legs
Comparing lengths using uniform non-standard measures and using comparative vocabulary (taller, longer, shorter)

Unit 2 Coin recognition: find amounts & change (suggested as 5 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Show 1p, 2p, 5p, and 10p coins. Give pairs of children a pot of money. Model exchanging each coin for 1ps.
Further Teaching with Y2
Show coins 20p, 50p, £1. Discuss how many 10ps each is worth. Find amounts made with two coins. Use ‘Spider’ counting for adding 10p or 20p.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Recognise coins and match equivalent numbers of pennies.
Y2 -- Investigate amounts that can be made from just two coins.

Day 2 Teaching
Rehearse value of coins to 20p. Start investigating possible amounts to be made with two coins. Create an ordered list.
Further Teaching with Y1
Rehearse how we can give someone 3p using two coins. Repeat for other small amounts made by adding 1p or 2p to another coin.
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation for this unit – Make 20p – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activities below.
Y1 -- Pay for items from a shop that need more than 1 coin.
Y2 -- Choice of short investigations involving finding money totals and using systematic recording.

Day 3 Teaching
Show items with price tags: 4p, 7p, 9p and 10p. Discuss coins to pay for each. Encourage counting on as an addition strategy.
Further Teaching with Y2
Show items priced at: 4p, 5p, 6p, 7p, 9p, 10p, 11p, 13p and 15p. Use 10p /20p coins to buy different items. Model how to find the change.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Children find different combinations to make money amounts.
Y2 -- Add two or three amounts and find change from 20p.

Day 4 Teaching
Model using a 10p coin to buy an item for 6p. Represent the number story on bar models; visualise ‘extra money’ paid as the change.
Further Teaching with Y2
Represent change problems using a bar model and find change from 20p.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Match items bought – and change - with bar models. Find change from 10p.
Y2 -- Write number stories that match bar models.

Day 5 Teaching
Show a pencil with a price tag of 5p. Draw a bar model and use this to help find change from 10p.
Further Teaching with Y2
Show pencils and pens with price tags. Increase prices by 10p, then 20p, then 11p. Then decrease prices by the same. Use Spider to visualise calculations.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Find change from 10p (or 20p) using number bar models.
Use one of the Y2 in-depth problem-solving investigations for this unit – Make it the same or Star of Change – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activities below.
Y2 -- Add and subtract 10p, 11p and 20p from prices in a shop.

You Will Need

  • Large mock 20p, 10p, 5p, 2p and 1p coins
  • Lots of real coins 1p, 2p, 5p, 10p, 20p and 50p coins
  • Pots for coins, sand tray and large paintbrushes
  • ‘Shopping with two coins’ sheet (see resources)
  • Toys/classroom objects with price tags
  • Items for sale with prices: 4p, 5p, 6p, 7p, 9p, 10p, 11p, 13p and 15p
  • 1 to 20 number track (see resources)
  • Crayons or pens and bead bar
  • ‘Finding totals and change’ sheet (see resources)
  • 0-20 bead strings and soft toy priced at 6p
  • Additional activity sheets (see resources)
  • Pencil priced at 5p, pens (50p–80p), pencils (10p, 11p, 20p), rubbers (1p)
  • Stationery items priced at under 10p (plus some 11p and 12p)

Short Mental Workouts

Day 1
Numbers more or less

Day 2
Ordering numbers

Day 3
Pairs to 10

Day 4
Target number

Day 5
What can you make?


Day 1
Y1: Coin matching
Y2: How to make an amount

Day 2
Y1: Add two coins together
Y2: Make amounts using 2p and 5p coin combinations

Day 3
Y1: Find ways to make an amount
Y2: Add amounts and find change

Day 4
Y1: What’s the change 1?
Y2: Find missing amounts of money

Day 5
Y1: What’s the change 2?
Y2: Add food prices

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving


  • Find a coin which:
    is worth less than 2p
    is worth 5p more than 5p
    has a value between 2p and 10p.
  • Draw the number of 1p coins each coin is worth:
    (i) 5p
    (ii) 2p
    (iii) 10p
  • Put at least one coin in each place on the table.
not round
  • Which two coins would you use to pay each of these amounts:
    (a) 7p
    (b) 11p
    (c) 3p
  • Polly spends 8p on a pencil and pays with a 10p coin. How much change does she get?
  • Make up a shopping story to go with this bar model:


  • Complete these diagrams:
  • Which coins will I need to give change from 20p if you buy a pen costing 11p?
  • Kate bought a drink and a cookie. She paid with a 50p coin and had 5p change. The drink cost 10p. How much was the cookie?
  • I only have 20p and 10p coins. Can I make 50p using exactly four coins?

Y1: In-depth Investigation: Make 20p
Children use coins and number shapes to investigate making a total of 20p.

Y2: In-depth Investigation: Make it the Same
Children use trial and improvement to find a way of arranging four coins on a square so that each row and each column add up to a constant total. They explore diagonal patterns.


Star of Change
Children use trial and improvement to arrange amounts of change from 20p along a star to give constant totals along each star line.

Extra Support

Making Money

Identifying coins (10p, 5p, 20p, 1p) and exchanging coins for their value in pennies

Count Your Pennies

Knowing the value of coins from 1p to 20p

Sticker shop
Finding change from 10p

Unit 3 Tell time to half and quarter hours (suggested as 2 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Show 8 o’clock on an analogue cloak. Count around the clock in hours, showing o’clock times.
Further Teaching with Y2
Display analogue and digital clocks. Show half hour times on both. Then introduce quarter hour times on both clocks.
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation ‘Time Line’ from NRICH as today’s group activity.
Or, use these activities:
Y1 -- Play ‘What’s the time Mr. Wolf?’ using clocks.
Y2 -- Read and write equivalent times on analogue and digital clocks or play Time Bingo.

Day 2 Teaching
Give each child a circular piece of paper, folded into quarters. Match this to the clock face and demonstrate quarter past and quarter to.
Further Teaching with Y1
Use the same folded circles to reinforce half past the hour times. Match to clock faces.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Tell and make o’clock and half past times.
Y2 -- Read and write times to the quarter hour.

You Will Need

  • Geared analogue clocks: one large and multiple small
  • ITP: Tell the Time
  • Blank game board (see resources)
  • Counters
  • ‘Reading the time on analogue and digital clocks’ sheets 1 to 4 (see resources)
  • Time bingo boards 1 to 5 (see resources)
  • Additional activity sheets (see resources)
  • Circles of paper
  • Cubes

Short Mental Workouts

Day 1
Count in 5s

Day 2
Show me: What’s the time?


Day 1
Y1: Read times for Mr Wolf.
Y2: Telling the time.

Day 2
Y1: O’clock and half past times.
Y2: Reading the time in analogue and digital.

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving


  • If the hands are both pointing to the ‘top’ of the clock, what time is it?
  • Choose a time from the list for each event:

Going home from school7 o’clock
Going to bedhalf past 3
Getting up12 o’clock
Breakfast5 o’clock
Eating tea8 o’clock
Lunch7 o’clock


  • Using the circles (see download), draw the hour hand for each time: Quarter to 6, Half past 11, Quarter past 4, 3 o’clock.
  • Write the missing digits on the digital displays.
    Quarter past 4 is 0 4: ☐ ☐
    Half past 6 is 0 6: ☐ ☐
    Quarter to ☐ is 08:45.

Y1: In-depth Investigation: Time Line
Describe what Emma might be doing from these pictures of clocks which show important times in her day. Time Line from

Y2: Time Bingo
Play Time Bingo, a Day 1 Group Activity.

Extra Support

Y1: Tick Tock O’clock
Sequencing numbers 1-12 on a clock face and reading and showing o’clock times on an analogue clock face

Y2: Time Triples
Telling the time to the hour on analogue and digital clocks

Unit 4 Understand units of time (suggested as 2 days)

Planning and Activities

Day 1 Teaching
Show a clock with a second hand. Count in seconds, first with the clock, then without it. Children say when they think 15 seconds, and then 30 seconds has passed.
Further Teaching with Y1
Use ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’ to revise the days of the week. Rehearse the order of the days.
Group Activities
Y1 -- Order ‘Hungry Caterpillar’ days of the week.
Y2 -- Time activities for 15 or 30 seconds.

Day 2 Teaching
Draw a 1 × 12 grid. Write the months in order. Note children’s birthdays. Rehearse the months’ sequence.
Further Teaching with Y2
Use a minute sand timer to time the children standing up and sitting down in sequence. Rehearse numbers of seconds in a minute and minutes in an hour.
Group Activities
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation for this unit – Calendar (in Activity Set C) from NCETM – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activities below.
Y1 -- Play a game/ sing song to learn the order of the months of the year.
Use the in-depth problem-solving investigation for this unit – Order, order! from NRICH – as today’s group activity.
Or use the activities below.
Y2 -- Estimate and time activities for 1 minute.

You Will Need

  • Large stop clock/clock with a second hand
  • The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle
  • Large sheet of paper and pens
  • ‘The Very Hungry Caterpillar’: picture/ days of the week cards (see resources)
  • ‘Timing events’ recording sheet (see resources)
  • Cubes or blocks for building
  • Stopwatches, 1-minute sand timers
  • Flipchart and pens
  • Months of the year cards (see resources)
  • Additional activity sheets (see resources)
  • 1–6 dice

Mastery: Reasoning and Problem-Solving


  • Write the missing day from Sam’s list:
  • True or false?
    June comes after July
    4 months in a row end with ‘__ber’
    March is in spring
    Summer is the season after winter
    December is after January


  • How many times can you write your whole name (all parts!) in one minute? Estimate; then try.
  • Complete each sentence:
    ☐ seconds = 1 minute
    60 minutes = 1 ☐
    ☐ hours = 1 day
    7 ☐ = 1 week
  • Estimate…How many minutes until playtime?

Y1: In-depth Investigation: Calendar (in ‘Activity Set C’)
Display a calendar; ask the children to write their name in their birthday month. Ask questions… Calendar (in 'Activity Set C') from

Y2 In-depth Investigation: Order, Order!
Can you place quantities in order from smallest to largest? Order, Order! from

Extra Support

Do you know the order of the days of the week? Snap from

Calendar Sorting
The pages of my calendar have got mixed up. Can you sort them out? Calendar Sorting from

Complete the ‘Working towards’ Day 1 Group Activity.