Imaginary worlds: King of the castle

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By Jenni Tavenerearly years teacher and writer

Use the exciting world of castles, princesses, kings and queens as inspiration for number activities, movement and role play

King of the castle

1 Comparing castles

Look at the different features of a castle

Problem Solving, Reasoning and Numeracy


Development matters: show an interest in number problems (30-50 months); use own methods to work through a problem (40-60+ months).

Early learning goal: use language such as ‘more’ or ‘less’ to compare two numbers.

What you need

Group size: small groups.

Pictures of real and imaginary castles; ‘Comparing castles’ activity sheet; felt-tipped pens and crayons.

What to do

Look at pictures of real and imaginary castles with the children. Talk about the similarities and differences between the castles, and introduce words such as ‘turret’, ‘drawbridge’ and ‘moat’.

Provide each child with a copy of the activity sheet. Encourage them to observe, count and compare the differences between the castles, by asking questions such as ‘Which castle has the most flags?’, ‘How many arched windows are on the first castle?’, ‘Are there less arched windows on the second castle?’ and ‘How many flags can you see altogether?’.

Encourage the children to decorate the castles using felt-tipped pens. Cut out the pictures and display them on the wall. Use the colourful castles to further inspire counting skills.


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