Maths on the move

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By Mike AskewProfessor of Primary Education

Explore active ways to teach the topic of position and movement in Key Stage 1

Boy running

When doing work on shape and space with young learners, we often concentrate on the names and properties of shapes. While this is important, children also need to begin thinking about how the position of shapes can be described. This lays the foundations for later, more precise descriptions of location using coordinate systems.

Shapes can also be moved in the 2D plane. There are three basic movements that move shapes without essentially changing them, two of which are introduced in Key Stage 1: slides in a straight line (translations) and turns (rotations). The third movement is a flip or reflection.


  1. Who’s in the square?
  2. Where’s the animal?
  3. Travelling round
  4. Bear walks
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