Don’t believe maths can be fun? Think again! We’ve got 5 counting games to keep the small people entertained for at least 5 minutes per game. That’s 300 seconds all to yourself — 1500 if they do all five! We did the maths for you. You’re welcome.

1. Treasure hunt Set them the challenge of finding 8 Pieces of Eight — shiny treasure. It could be tin foil, food cans, a silver pen… Don’t let them loose with the antique jewels, though. (No, we don’t own any either).

2. Hungry caterpillar Tell them to wriggle along the floor to 1 green thing (eg, an apple), 2 purple things (plums), 3 yellow (lemons), 4 red (strawberries) and 5 orange (yes, you’ve guessed it). By this point they’ll be exhausted. And hungry.

3. Mad as a hatter Aim is to find and wear as many hats as possible. Then count them. Simple. Funny.

4. Lunch bunch Tell them to make a sandwich and put on one piece of cheese, two pieces of lettuce, three tomatoes. Counting, tick, Healthy lunch, tick. Made it themselves, tick, tick, tick! Now cut the sandwich into four and get them to take away one piece at a time by eating it.

5. Mummy massage Get them to learn the meaning of time while giving Mummy a nice back rub for 5 whole minutes.

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Article written by Sara Conway