Explore number patterns with a visit to Numberline Lane

- Describe and extend number sequences.
- Count on and back in ones and twos from any small number.
- Compare and order numbers.

Using a story as a starting point for a numeracy lesson is an ideal way of enhancing children's motivation to learn. As well as providing a real context for exploring concepts, a story can also make it easier for children to remember an objective.

Throw a large dice or pick a number from 1-10 from a bag of number cards. Count on ten numbers forwards and back. Pick a second number and repeat. On a numberline, ask the children to point to the numbers as they are counting.

- Introduce Numberline Lane and the character of Walter One (see box right). Can the children tell you which numbers would live on either side of Walter? How many do the children need to add to move to the next number? How many do you subtract to move back again?
- Place some consecutive number cards on the board and jumble them up. Find the lowest number and then add '1' repeatedly to place the rest in order. Place all the even numbers on the board from 2-10, again jumbled up. Can the children find the lowest number to start and then add on '2' to work out the order of the remaining numbers?
- Place three numbers at the beginning of a numberline. Ask the children to fill in the next five numbers. Find the next numbers by either adding '1' or '2'.
- Place the last three numbers on a numberline. Ask the children to complete the beginning of the numberline. Find the missing numbers by repeatedly subtracting either '1' or '2'.
- Using copies of the Resource file (see opposite), insert numbers according to the ability groups in the class. Ask the children to fill in the missing numbers in the square boxes. Extend by using numbers above 20, or by only using odd or even numbers. Simplify by only using numbers below 10 and leaving fewer numbers to complete.

Walter One has tried to complete some numberlines, but some of his numbers have fallen off and on other numberlines he has put two numbers in the wrong place. Draw these numberlines on the board, and ask the children to fill in the missing gaps and correct the mistakes.

Visit the Numberline Lane website at www.numberlinelane.co.uk for further activities and worksheets.

Numberline Lane is a lane with ten houses. A number lives in each house, from Walter One to Jenny Ten. The odd-numbered houses are on one side of the lane and the even-numbered houses are on the other. Walter One lives at the beginning of Numberline Lane. He is a shy character and very rarely leaves his own home. He has one teacup, one plate, one chair and lives in a house with one bedroom.

Walter was lonely and wanted to make new friends. One morning he decided that he was going to leave his house and walk up the lane, to see whose house he would find next. But Walter One was so scared of not knowing who he would meet that he immediately ran home before making any new friends.

In a puff of smoke, Gus Plus the adding magician appeared in front of Walter. Gus told Walter he was going to help and gave Walter One a numberline. The magician placed Walter's number at the beginning of the line and explained what he needed to do.