Clean Up, Up, Up!

It’s cleanup time, and Daddy and his little one are putting away books, blocks, teddy bears, and train cars, and setting the table—all while having fun with math! As Daddy talks with his toddler, he uses spatial-relationship math words and phrases like up, down, next to, and under to reinforce his young learner’s understanding. When dinner is ready, something goes up into the mouth!

Illustration © 2018 by Ying-Hwa Hu

Includes a note from early childhood education math expert Dr. Susan C. Levine that shows adults how everyday activities and conversation with young children offer rich opportunities to build an early understanding of spatial relations.

This book is based upon work supported in part by TERC under a grant from the Heising-Simons Foundation. 

To see more of award-winning illustrator Ying-Hwa Hu’s artwork you can visit her at

“EMP loves this book for toddlers and preschoolers because it shows everyday families involved in everyday math! Beautifully illustrated with excellent info for families.”– Early Math Project, California Department of Education

“Ellen Mayer continues to add to her sweet and joyful series of books for little ones and the adults in their lives that model ways parents, grandparents, and caregivers can talk with children to help them develop language and math literacy at the youngest ages. In Clean Up Up Up!, the concept of spatial relations is organically introduced to toddlers through the motions and words used while putting items in their proper place, stepping up on a stool to use something out of the child’s reach, and even when eating. Research shows that talking with children at all ages about math concepts such as positions and locations improves their understanding and leads to better success in school and beyond . Little readers will be charmed by the enthusiastic child and the little puppy that follows along …. Hu’s vivid colors as well as the smiles and enthusiasm with which Daddy, Mommy, and their child interact make Clean Up, Up, Up! a feel-great educational read.”– Kathy Lynn of

Recommended by California Early Math Project

Recommended by Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Recommended by EarlyMath EDC

Recommended by Early Math Collaborative, Erikson Institute

To Order

starbright Bookshop amazon

ISBN: 978-1-59572-801-2
Illustrated by Ying-Hwa Hu
Published by Star Bright Books, 2018
Board book, 20 pages
For ages 1-3

¡Arriba, arriba, arriba a limpiar! / Clean Up, Up, Up!, 2018
Spanish/English bilingual edition
ISBN: 978-1-59572-802-9