Introduction to this Lesson Note Nursery 2 First Term Mathematics Week 1

I wrote this Lesson Note Nursery 2 First Term Mathematics Week 1 based on the Nigerian National Early Childhood Education Curriculum. Particularly, I used the Pre-Primary Teaching Schemes that the Education Resource Centre, Abuja developed in 2014 – contact me if you want this scheme. This scheme is the same as those of the other 36 states’ education resource development centre. This is because all the states developed their schemes from the National Curriculum. Nonetheless, I only crosschecked this topic in that of Lagos, Kano and the FCT. Regardless, this lesson note is suitable for use in any Nigerian school that adopts the National Curriculum.

Click here to get the scheme of work that I used and which we also use for other lesson notes.

Guides to Adapting this Lesson Note

I wrote this lesson note in outline of standard lesson plans. However, new teachers must know that this note is too long/detailed for a lesson plan. Hence, you cannot submit this lesson note directly to your head teacher or supervisor. If you intend to use this note for your lesson plan – which many do; I advise you to get my Lesson Plan Template. I wrote the template professionally in a way that makes it easy for teachers to create clean lesson plans by simply filling it. Click here to check the template.


Lesson Note Nursery 2 First Term Mathematics Week 1

Class: Nursery One

Term: Third

Week: 1

Subject: Mathematics/Number Work

Topic: Counting numbers 1 – 20

Recognition of numbers 1 – 20

Writing 1 – 10

1.             OBJECTIVES

At the end of the lesson, the pupils should have attained the following:

  • Cognitive:
    • Count numbers 1 – 20
    • Identify numbers 1 – 20
  • Psychomotor:
    • Write numbers 1 – 10
  • Affective
    • Demonstrate/internalize the concept of numerical values of numbers 1 – 20

2.             Previous Knowledge

The pupils had in the previous terms learned the following:

  1. Counting numbers 1 – 50
  2. Writing of numbers 1 – 50

3.             Instructional Materials

  1. Number models – plastic, metallic or cardboard cut-outs – consisting of several 1’s through 9’s including 0’s
  2. Stand counters of 20 beads
  3. Several counters – bottle covers, blocks, pebbles, etc. in bundles of 10. I recommend bottle covers in tens packed into an improvised container that can contain no more than 10 counters – 2 for each pupil
  4. Chalk/Marker and black/white board
  5. Number charts of 1 – 20
  6. Several (carton) boxes for each pupil
  7. Education Resource Centre. (2014). FCT Nursery Teaching Scheme. Abuja: Education Resource Centre (ERC).
  8. Kano Education Resource Department. (2016). Pre-Primary Schemes of work. Kano: Kano Education Resource Department.
  9. Lagos State Ministry of Education. (2016). Early Childhood Care Education Scheme (Mathematics). Lagos: Lagos State Ministry of Education.
  10. Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC). (2012). Mathematics Teachers’ Guide for the Revised 9-Year Basic Education Curriculum (BEC). Yaba, Lagos: Nigerian Educational Research and Development Council (NERDC).

4.             PRESENTATION

The teacher delivers the lesson as in the following steps:

I.         Introduction

Identification of Pupils Previous Knowledge

To introduce the lesson, the teacher does the following:

  1. S/he picks a set of the same objects – say pencils, or sweets in both hands. The number of such items in one hand should be more than the number in another hand. However, neither of the number of items should exceed 20.
  2. The teacher thence shows the pupils the items in both hands and asks them which hand contains more of the object.

NOTE: The teacher can use currency notes as well – say N20 notes in one hand; and N10 naira note or a mix of lower denomination summing less than 20 in another hand.

Pupils’ Roles

  1. The pupils shall guess the hand that has more of the object

The teacher receives as many attempts as possible. If a pupil gets it wrong, s/he declines politely and demands/encourage other pupils to try. When a pupil eventually gets it right, the teacher friendly asks the pupil how s/he was able to identify the greater.

After the ensuing discussion, the teacher tells the pupils that there is a way older people use to tell the greater things from the lesser – this is called number.


After that, the teacher asks the pupils if any of them is still able to remember the meaning of number. Following attempts, the teacher reminds the pupils that a number is what tells us how many of a thing we have.

The teacher continues by revising the previous lessons as I outline below:

  • S/he tells them that there are many numbers because we can have many things.
  • Each of the many numbers has its special name and way it is written.
  • Examples of the numbers that we have are 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 0– for each of these numbers, the teacher reminds the pupils the names, how to form the symbols and the values – by way of demonstration. The teacher remembers that zero (0) is a difficult concept for the pupils to understand at their level. Hence, the pupils will only understand it when the teacher demonstrates it. For guide on how to demonstrate and explain the values of numbers 0 – 9, check this note.
Bundles – Numbers above 9

After the teacher has finished teaching and explaining the numbers 0 – 9, s/he tells the pupils that those are the numbers there is.

S/he thereafter tells the pupils that we however usually have more things than these numbers 0 – 9. The teacher continues that once the number of a thing is one more than 9 – i.e. if one already has 9 and then gets one more – then we say the person has a bundle.

The teacher demonstrates this by arranging ten bottle covers into the improvised container of ten. Thereafter, the teacher distributes 9 counters and one of the improvised pack to the pupils. Thereafter, the teacher demonstrates and directs the pupils to gradually arrange the nine counters into the pack. Once, the teacher and the pupils have done this, the teacher asks whether the pack is filled – or if one more of the counter can still be added. Since one more counter can still be added, the teacher distributes one more counter to the pupils. Then taking his/hers, the teacher demonstrates and directs the pupils to fill their pack with the one counter.

Number 10

Once the teacher and every pupil has filled their pack and probably covered it, the teacher tells the pupils that the pack is known as a bundle. Hence, the teacher explains further that a bundle therefore is 10. This also means that the first number after 9 is 10. The teacher notes that we write ten or a bundle as 10 (1 and 0) to mean one bundle and nothing. Finally, the teacher observes that we write the number ten in such a way that the 1 and 0 are not far from each other.

Number 11

Following the explanation of the number 10, the teacher then teaches that if one already has a bundle and then gets one more – s/he gives them one more counter; then since the extra one will not be able to enter into the bundle pack, we simply say the total number of the item is one bundle and one – which means a ten and a 1. The teacher thence teaches that we write one bundle and one as 11. S/he also teaches that the number after a bundle therefore is 11. The teacher concludes the explanation on the number 11 by telling the pupils that the number 11 is called eleven. So, the number after ten is eleven.

Numbers 12 – 19

Succeeding the above, the teacher repeats it for numbers 12 through 19. For each number the teacher gives three explanations:

  1. If one already has 11 items and then gets one more – or if you add one to eleven – the teacher gives the pupils one more counter each time, then we say it is one bundle and 2 – because there will now be two items that is not inside the bundle pack.
  2. We write one bundle and two as 12 and call it twelve.
  3. That means the number after eleven is twelve. The teacher teaches the pupils how to pronounce twelve.
Number 20

After number 19, the teacher distributes the second bundle pack to the pupils. Then s/he tells them that since the items outside the first bundle pack is many enough, they should try filling the second bundle pack. Therefore, the teacher leads the pupils to fill in their second bundle pack. After packing the nine counters into the second bundle pack, the teacher asks the pupils if it is filled. Since it isn’t, the teacher distributes the one more counter to each of the pupils and then leads the pupils to fill the second bundle pack.

Soon after the teacher and the pupils fill the second bundle packs, the teacher tells the pupils that they now have exactly two bundles and nothing left on the ground. The teacher then teaches that we write two bundles and nothing as 2 and 0 close to each other. The teacher also explains that the name of two bundles and nothing (20) is twenty – s/he teaches the pupils how to pronounce twenty. S/he concludes the explanation that since a bundle is ten, then two bundles means 2 tens.


After the teacher had finished explaining the concept of the values of number twenty-five, s/he revises the numbers 1 – 20 again. The teacher focuses on helping the pupils to identify the numbers, their names and symbols (how each is written) as well as to understand the concept of the value of each.

II.         Counting Exercise

General counting with stand counters

After the revision, the teacher leads the pupils into general counting:

He or she puts up the stand counter. Then sliding each counter to the other side, s/he together with the pupils, counts until the counters finish from one side. The teacher repeats this by sliding each counter back to the original position and again – several times. The teacher may invite willing pupils to lead the counting by sliding the counters as the entire class counts.

Group and Individual Counting

After the general counting, the teacher further strengthens the pupil’s memorization of the names and order of numbers through group counting.

  • The teacher groups the pupils into pairs
  • Going to each group and while watch and follow, the teacher counts different number of counters for each pupil
  • The teacher directs each pupil to count differently given number out of his or her counter and give it to the partner
  • Individual pupil counts the new number of counters in their possession and tells the teacher
  • The teacher confirms the number then make the pupils to repeat the process – exchange some counters and count

Oral Counting without Counters

After the pupils are able to count very well with the counters, the teacher directs them to put the counters away. Then s/he leads them to count orally without using the counters. The teacher and the pupils do this several times. S/he may invite different willing pupils to lead the oral counting as well.


The teacher may assess the individual pupil’s counting ability by:

  1. Asking them to orally count from a number that s/he states to another
  2. Sending them to go and fetch a given number of item for him/her

Recognition of the symbols of Numbers 1 – 20

After the counting exercises, the teacher reminds the pupils that each of the numbers has its own way that we write it. Thus, s/he explains that they are now going to learn how to we write each number – 1-20.

Consequently, the teacher starts from zero and forth; explains that:

  • Zero means nothing and is written as 0
  • One is a number which means – (in local dialect) and we write it as 1
  • Two is a number which means – (in local dialect) and we write it as 2
  • Ten (one bundle and nothing) is a number which means – (in local dialect) and we write it as 10.
  • Eleven (one bundle and 1) is a number which means – (in local dialect) and we write 11
  • – – –
  • Twenty (2 tens and nothing) is a number which means – (in local dialect) and we write it as 20

The teacher may call the local names of numbers and asks pupils to mention the English equivalents.

Following this, the teacher uses the number chart of 1 – 20, and lead the counter once again – several times. S/he may invite pupils to come, point at the numbers and lead the counting.


The teacher evaluates the pupils’ ability to recognize the letter through physical exercise thus:

S/he places different number of counters into the boxes. Then gives the boxes to the pupils with the number models or cardboard number cut-outs. Thereafter, the teacher directs the pupils to open up each of the boxes, count the number of items in the boxes and then pick the corresponding number model/cut-out and place on/inside the boxes with the counters.

The teacher moves round or collects the boxes, confirms the counters and the number model/cut-out that is in it.

Writing Numbers 1 – 10

Succeeding the counting/recognition exercises, the teacher tells the pupils which of them are able to recall how to write numbers 1 – 10. Thereafter, taking each number at a time; the teacher begins with correct pencil grasp. After that, s/he taking each number 1 – 10; demonstrate the formation of each number and directs the pupils to do the same. Kindly refer to my nursery one lesson notes for how to form each numbers 1 – 10.

Since it is first term, expect some pupils that may not be able to flow at the pace of others – especially those that just transferred to the school. Be patient with them, take them at their own pace, revisit lacking basis and build them up.

After letter formation, give the pupils tracing exercises and the finally copying down. It is advisable to start writing exercises by writing on air and sand for starters.

When practicing to write number 10, introduce correct character spacing with multiple demos/examples.

5.             EVALUATION

The teacher assesses the pupils understanding of the lesson by giving them the following exercises.

Exercise 1: Oral counting

The teacher asks the pupils (either individually or in small groups) to count numbers 1 -25.

Exercise 2: Recognition of numbers 1 – 20

  • The teacher uses a number chart or a handwritten numbers 1 – 20; points at each number and ask individual pupil to name it – then the reverse.
  • The teacher calls the local names of numbers and demands pupils to mention the English equivalents.
  • The teacher gives the pupils the matching exercise contained in Activity Book.

Exercise 3: Numerical Values

  • Teacher collects some items (recommended is biscuit or sweet); divides the items into two groups – one being more than the other.
  • The teacher asks pupils to count each group; thereafter, reminds the pupil the number of each group, then asks the pupils to pick either the smaller or greater.
  • Then the teacher gives the corresponding exercise (in Systematic Numeracy)


Which is greater?

  1. count and circle the greater/lesser
  2. fill in missing number

6.             CONCLUSION

The teacher concludes the lesson by recording pupils’ performance and if necessary, providing feedback to the parents for needed home assistance.

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