Here is your homework for this holiday:
* Please write comments on this post and tell me what you are doing - even if it's just a short one like "Hello Mr. Kohll, I am in Beijing." You can use this to write to each other as well!
* Here is a book of maths games that parents can play with children at home. Parents, you will find these very useful to your children. Why not play one every day?
* Here is a letter encouraging you to play educational games - not just fun games - at If you play on these every day, it will improve all of your subjects. Parents, this is homework; and I am sure you will be happy to make sure your children work on it a little each day (the educational games, NOT the Fun Games).
Happy Holidays! See you in May.
Year 1 Maths Homework Games.doc
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Using educational websites to help children at home

The May holidays are almost here, and I would like to talk to you about how you can help your child or children to learn at home. I am very happy to hear that many children in Year 1 have played educational games at home. I think they are a wonderful way for children to learn and improve, especially on weekends and in the holidays. I made the website to share the best websites I can find, and I want to talk to you about how you can use them to help your children.

 Some of the games on the website are just for fun. Most of the website is full of games which help your children in all subjects – maths, English, science, etc.  

There are lots of games on the website. You and the children can choose to work on English, maths or science games; games to learn other subjects, or games to speak and read Chinese. There are also games to help children to speak and read English. Start at the Year 1-2 level; if the games are too difficult, try Nursery-Reception; if they’re too easy, you can try Year 3-4.

I especially recommend:

·         The Learning Chocolate website: All children in Year 1 will benefit from learning English vocabulary. This website has many vocabulary games. Some are easy and some are more difficult, so all Year 1 children can find suitable topics for them, whether they speak good English, some English or little English. The Learning Chocolate website can also be used to learn to speak or read or write Chinese!

·         To learn maths and science: These are some of the best games for Maths and English. If the children play these every day they will benefit a lot.

·         BBC Science Clips: - excellent for learning about Year 1 Science topics.

·         The Arcademic website has many fun games for practicing basic maths topics: 

·         Tutpup!

·         Go to to see a variety of maths games for all Year 1 topics, and to for English games.

If there is something you want your children to learn more about, please ask me. I will be happy to find a game for you if I can. Also, if anyone has a good website they would like to share with me I’d be very happy if you could tell me! Thanks!

You don’t need to know much about computers to play these games. Just open the internet and go to On the left, you can see the categories for different ages. Go to Year 1-2 and choose a subject. All of the games should work, but some of them may have problems on that day, or maybe need a program to run that your computer doesn’t have. Don’t worry; go and play another game instead.

I understand that many Year 1 families have other children and that the computer is often busy, but it is very beneficial for your child to play on some of these games; many of them can really help them, even if they only played on them for a few minutes a day. If you have problems with your computer at home, tell me, and I will be happy to let your child have some extra computer time during break time at school.

Finally, I’m glad that so many parents are finding the Year 1 website ( useful. I update it with photos and articles about the work that Year 1 do, as well as games they can play and resources they can use. It can be read in any language (and usually translates quite well, although not perfectly).

I hope that you find this useful, and that you will enjoy helping your children with their homework.

Best wishes,

Mr. Kohll.


Maths Is Fun! - Activity Pack: Year 1

Please enjoy these games with your child on a regular basis. Talk with them about what you have both learnt, or about strategies that you notice them using.

Please initial and date each time you play. After you have played any of the games on 5 different days, show the book to the class teacher and your child will receive a small prize. Do the same after playing it 10 times.

Every correctly completed booklet sent in before the end of year 1 will receive a grand prize. This means that completing all ten games in the booklet will win your child a total of 21 prizes!

Please remember that the prizes are not the main thing (though don’t discourage your child from working towards them!). The real prize for your child will be spending time with you doing something worthwhile and enjoyable, and of course your child (and maybe you!) will make invaluable progress in their mathematics.

1: Roll Two Dice.

Take it in turns to roll two dice.

You score a point for correctly saying a number sentence about what the two numbers add up to (e.g. “Four plus 1 equals 5”)

Why not score a bonus point if you can work out the ‘difference’. (In our example, “Four minus 1 equals 3”)

You will be playing this subtraction version in Year 2.

Each have 10 turns. 

2. Bonds Snap!

Find a pack of cards and remove all the picture cards. There should now be forty cards left: four aces, four twos, etc.

Starting with 20 cards each, take it in turns to turn over and deal a card. If both top cards add up to ten, shout ‘SNAP’! The first person to shout it correctly wins all the cards on the table. The winner is the first person to collect all the cards.

3. 3-D Shape Hunt

Have a walk around your home with your child. Try to spot a range of different 3-D shapes. To start with, just work together to find lots of different ones. See which ones your child can name.

Can they spot and name a cube, a cuboid, a cylinder and a sphere?

4. Dominos

If you don’t know the rules, it is easy to find out! This is a good game for quick recognition of numbers (called ‘subitising’) without counting. Cheap sets of 28 dominoes are readily available from discount shops.

In essence, the idea is to make a chain of your dominoes, but where dominoes touch, the two touching numbers must match.

Fuller sets of rules and some interesting variations can be found by searching the internet for ‘how to play dominoes’.

See items 9 and 10 for further mathematical domino activities.

5. PacMan – right angle hunt

A right angle is an amount of turn equal to a quarter of a full revolution. Your child needs to practice recognising right angles as they are an important part of his or her understanding of shapes. This activity requires a small bit of construction, but the results make it worthwhile. Cut out a circular piece of card. One easy way is by draw round a tin first.  Finally, cut out exactly a quarter of the circle to end up with a PacMan shape.

Your child can decorate the shape with eyes if they want, or indeed with any pattern at all. Now go round your home together and try to find 5 different examples of ‘right-angles’, which means any angle that PacMan can eat exactly – i.e. it must fit flush to BOTH of his jaws with no gaps.

Each time you play, try to find different examples of right angles in your home.

6. Count On



This is an easy game for two players which needs no equipment at all. One of you chooses a number from the first column (the size of jump), and the other chooses a number from the second (the starting number).

Taking it in turns, you must say the next number in sequence.

So, if you chose to start with jumps of 2, and your child chooses to start at 7, the conversation would go (hopefully):

You: “7”

Child: “9”

You: “11”

Child: “13” etc.

Stop when you get up to 50, or whenever you feel that your child is struggling, and swop roles. Repeat this until you have got to 50 at least 5 times.

7. Count Back






Once children have mastered the ‘Count On’ game, it is important that they also learn to count back as well.

So, this game should not be attempted before your child is familiar with ‘Count On’, but it does provide a useful extension activity. It is exactly the same, start from any of the starting numbers and use any of the jumps) but this time keep counting until you get to zero. 

8. Number Plate Totals

This is a good one for a long boring car journey. All of us have experienced the dreaded ‘are we there yet?’ moments and this is one way to alleviate it!

Ask your child to find and read an old-style number plate (see above) on a nearby vehicle, and get them to add up all the digits in it. They can also choose a number-plate for you to calculate the total.

You could even offer a bonus for the biggest total found that journey/day/week/ever!

9. Domino Sums

Another domino game, similar to the game with two dice. Take a full set of dominos and 13 post-it notes, numbered from 0 to 12.

Line the post-its up on the table in a long line in 0,1,2...11,12 order. Now mix the dominos up face down. Start the clock. Your child has to take it in turn to pick up a domino, for example the 3 4’ domino, and say out loud “3 add 4 equals 7”, placing the domino onto the post-it with ‘7’ on. Repeat until every domino is on one of the piles. Stop the clock, and make a record of the time – you can try to beat it the next time you play. As your child does this activity, listen carefully to check they are not making any errors. Blanks are worth zero.

At the end, for a nice surprise the first time and a check for every time after that, count the number of dominos in each pile. What is the interesting pattern?

10. Clock Watch!

It is never too early to learn to tell the time, but it is best introduced gradually. Have a look around your house and talk to your child about the different clocks. Many will be digital but hopefully you can also find at least one analogue clock face with numbers on.

You can make a simple clock face by drawing round a circle, adding the numerals 1-12, and using two lolly sticks as the hands.

To start with, show them all the numbers. Explain that a clock face is a number line which is curved. Remind them that the big hand pointing to the 12 means it is ‘something o clock’. If you have a book with a toy clock face on use that. Move the hands around and ask your child to say what time it is.

Also, say a time and ask your child to move the hands to show that time. It is important to do it both ways as often as possible.

At this stage, you will probably want to stick just to o’clock (and perhaps half past but only if they are ready.)
Hello, Year 1 children and parents. This is the homework for the Spring Festival Holidays. Parents: please help your children to do a little homework every day, and help them to do the work, but do not give them the answers! They will learn best if you encourage them to do the work themselves.

Use this hundred square to practice maths. Here are some games to play with it. Some are easy, some are difficult. Every day, choose a game that is suitable for your child.  
1. Point to a number and ask your child to tell you the number before or after it.
2. Point to a number and ask you child to add two, three, five or ten.
3. Point to a number and ask your child to take away two, three, five or ten.
4. Point to a number and ask your child if it is even (ends in 0, 2, 4, 6, 8) or odd (ends in 1, 3, 5, 7, 9).
5. Ask your child to count forward or backward in steps of two, three, four, five or ten.
6. You can use the 100 square to add or take away numbers between 10 and 20. For example, 87-15.

Go to the KS1 Maths Games page to practice. Try to play one learning game every day.
Use this clock to practice time. Your child can learn that one hour has 60 minutes, and learn that one is 5 minutes, two is 10 minutes. Your child can learn that the right side of the clock is past, and the left side is to.
Can you count the minutes on this clock? Which number is ten past? Which number is twenty-five to?


  1. Above is a picture of the sounds we are learning. Practice saying them and the words for them - for example, sh for shoe.
  2. Every child has a holiday diary. Please use it. Remember to write neatly on the line, and to use capital letters and full stops.
  3. Go to the KS1 English Games page to see games to practice English. Try to play one or more learning games every day. 
  4. You have library and reading books to take home. Please read them every day.
  5. Please write a comment for this blog in English. Tell me where you are, and what you are doing. Tell me if you are having fun. Remember to use capital letters and full stops. Remember to give your name and date. For example:
Lisa, 7/2/11
Dear Mr. Kohll,
Hello. I am on holiday in Beijing. I am having a lot of fun. Yesterday I went to a toy shop. I have a big teddy bear. My mother and father and I went to McDonald's yesterday.


The children have been studying materials. You can practice pointing to things and asking them what they are made of. They should be able to use the English words for plastic, metal, paper, glass, fabric, wood, wax. Some may be able to use words for wool, cotton or different metals.
After the holiday the children will learn about plants. This holiday, they can practice looking at different types of plants and flowers and learning about them. Can they point to the leaves, flowers or roots of a plant?
Go to the KS1 Science Games page to practice. Try to play one game every day.


    Mr. Kohll

    Hello! This is the page for holiday homework. Play a little and learn a little every day.


    April 2011
    January 2011


    Spring Festival