Addition and subtraction is a fundamental part of maths kS1. At this age your children should be learning how to:

  • Read and write numeracy symbols such as addition, subtraction and equals signs.
  • Be able to use number bonds within 20
  • Add and subtract one and two digit numbers up to 20
  • Use addition and subtraction facts up to 20 with ease
  • Show that addition can be done in any order and subtraction of one number from another can’t
  • Recognise the inverse relationship between addition and subtraction and use this to check calculations
  • Add and subtract numbers mentally
  • Add and subtract numbers with up to three digits
  • Be able to estimate the answer to a calculation
  • Solve missing number problems

Number Bonds

In maths KS1 number bonds are also often referred to as ‘number pairs’. They are simply the pairs of numbers that make up a given number.


Maths KS1 Addition and Subtraction Activities

What’s Your Name Worth?

Assign a number to each letter of the alphabet. You may want to start with 1 and continue with consecutive numbers, or you can assign any numbers that you wish. Have your children and other family members write their names and below each letter, the “value” of each letter. Add to find out whose name is worth the most!

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9   and so on…

Solve the Problem

Write 10 two-digit subtraction problems, which do not require regrouping, on index cards. Place the cards facedown. Take turns with your child choosing a card solving the problem, and then explaining the steps used to solve the problem. When you’ve solved all of the problems, order the differences from least to greatest.

Number Bonds

For fun way for your children to learn the basic number bonds they need to know. Attached to this post is a printable number bond chart. You could play a simple memory game with your children to help them memorise the number bonds.


Addition and Subtraction Online Games



Post Sortingmaths ks1

The aim of the game is to put the post in the right letterbox. To do this children have to work out the sums on each of the letter. Once the right score has been found then drag the letter to the matching letterbox. This is a fun game that can help improve the speed of your children’s addition and subtraction. 



Alien Additionmaths ks1

This game follows the same format as the previous game but follows a different storyline. In this game your children have to work out the correct answer in order to stop the aliens from attacking. This is a good quick game that will allow your children to learn without them thinking they are.