Once students know how to count up to 20 easily and without mistakes, and recognise how many each number is, they are ready to start thinking about “the next number”. For example, you can ask “What number comes right after 6?”. What we want the child to do is to recall that part of the counting sequence (not start again from “one”).

Another way to trigger this thinking is to have a container, add a certain number (< 10) of objects, and say the number of objects: “This bucket has 7 balls in it”. Then add one more object, without students being able to see into the container, and ask “How many are in here now?”.

Once counting on by one is established, you can challenge students to count on 2 or 3. Stop there, because we use other strategies for adding larger numbers.