Super Maths in the Supermarket

As I was shopping in the supermarket with my children I realised that there are a whole host of learning opportunities that it offers.

This post will focus on numeracy (maths) skills – maybe after next weeks trip I’ll look at literacy or another learning area!

So here are some of our teaching and learning experiences:

  • Counting; ask your child to get a certain number of an item e.g. get me four carrots or count how many are in the packet e.g. counting the three peppers in the sealed bag
  • Number recognition; what numbers can they spot – the aisles are numbered as are the tills (checkouts), look for the numbers on packaging e.g. the number of eggs in the box or the number of pints in the bottles of milk;
  • Size comparisons; which is biggest / smallest, longest / shortest
  • Weight; which is heaviest / lightest, how much does it weigh? (in stores that allow you to weigh your produce)
  • Simple story sums; we’ve got three potatoes and one more makes? if there are four of us for dinner and we are going to two sausages for dinner how many do we need altogether?
  • Identifying 3D shapes; for example, tins are cylinders, cereal boxes are cuboids and oranges are spheres

And for older children you can introduce money questions and budgeting questions

  • which one costs more / less?
  • how much for two?
  • how much change do you get?
  • price comparisons – if six yoghurts cost £3 and four cost £2.20 which yoghurts are cheapest?

And when you get home your children can continue with learning about shopping skills. Role play shopping or play shopping games for example the Orchard Toys game Pop to the Shops which helps children learn about handling money and giving change.


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