Professional Development

Supporting Spatial Reasoning in the Early Years

Spatial reasoning concerns our understanding of how things, including ourselves, relate to the physical space around us. We engage spatially all the time, from babies reaching for a toy, to us calculating how much paper to cut to successfully wrap a present.

There is an increasing body of research supporting the importance of early spatial reasoning on later, and wider, mathematical achievement. This video examines some of this international research and relates this to practical, playful suggestions of our work with our youngest learners.

This comes with a proviso: to paraphrase John H Mason, everything I say needs checking against your own experience. The video should be of interest to all those working in Early Years, those working with trainees, teachers in primary schools as well as secondary mathematics educators.

Watch the video

About Dr Helen J Williams

Dr Helen J Williams is an independent educational consultant specialising in the teaching and learning of primary mathematics.

Her particular expertise is in Early Years and KS1 and she has a special interest in developing effective playful opportunities for learning mathematics. She enjoys working alongside colleagues to develop curricula of this sort. Helen’s doctoral research was completed with Roehampton University in 2014 and is entitled: “The relevance of role play to the learning of mathematics in the primary classroom”.

Ages: Early years, Primary, Secondary