Mathematics Resources for Primary Schools

Mathematics has a reputation for being restrictive and boring. However, when we provide students with opportunities to see the creativity and fun in maths, they are more likely to approach it with enthusiasm.   

Essential Resources maths range has teaching resources to encourage students to use their imagination and problem-solving skills. We want to help teachers show their students that maths does have meaning and relevance. Our resources link maths to te reo Māori, stories, and the outdoors. 

Our primary school resources align with the New Zealand Curriculum mathematics strands - number and algebra, geometry and measurement, and statistics and probability. We have Year 1 to Year 8 worksheets, task cards and at-home workbooks. No Nonsense Number supports students struggling to grasp numeracy skills.  


What mathematics resources should be in your classroom?

The primary school mathematics resources teachers should have in their classroom are: 

No Nonsense Number by Jackie Andrews, Jude Callaghan and Suzi de Gouveia 

This series is designed to support students who are struggling to grasp numeracy concepts. Each book contains maths worksheets and activity cards to support learning and develop numeracy skills. 

Algebra for Everyone by Vaneeta Manners 

Number and algebra are one of the mathematics strands throughout the New Zealand Curriculum. Already in primary school, a proportion of students think they cannot do algebra. Algebra for Everyone is a maths teaching resource developed to give all students a foundation of algebra for them to progress through the mathematics curriculum.  

Maths Problems and Investigations by Greg Purcell 

The series has three books covering the primary school levels. The books aim to get students to learn mathematics and apply their knowledge and skills in real-life situations. The problems challenge students to use mental strategies and traditional written strategies. 

How to teach mathematics in primary classes?

Some strategies to teach mathematics in primary classes include: 

  • Connect mathematics concepts to real-life experiences - Open-ended problems and maths investigations are effective ways of doing this. Another method involves using everyday objects to illustrate maths concepts, for example, position and orientation.  

  • Use a variety of teaching resources - Students learn when they engage with a new concept in different ways. Maths worksheets, task cards, posters and games are all effective tools. Our blog, Three excellent ideas for teaching problem-solving, gives more detail about how you can incorporate these into your class.  

  • Ask students to explain their thinking - When students get to show the why behind their answers, they think critically. This helps them to understand the theory and apply it the next time they encounter a similar problem.  

  • Encourage teamwork - When students work together, they learn from one another. It also encourages them to verbalise the problem to help their own understanding. 

What makes our mathematics resources so great?

Essential Resources mathematics resources are great because: 

  1. Our authors! Our maths teaching resources are written by fellow primary school teachers and experts. Their experience enables them to design teaching resources that align with the New Zealand curriculum. They also understand the needs of teachers and want to help save you time. 

  2. Our maths resources are specific. Our resources are made for the New Zealand Curriculum. We have a range of resources to meet the needs of all primary school years. For example, Harry O’Brien’s, Open-ended Problem Solving, provides Year 1 to Year 8 maths worksheets for problem-solving. 

  3. Our primary maths resources are inclusive. Our No Nonsense Number series is designed for students needing more maths support. On the other hand, Maths Problem Solving for Higher Achieving Students is for students who need more of a challenge. We also have our Dyscalculia Matters series, which clarifies where a child with dyscalculia needs to start their maths learning journey.