Building Maths strategy confidence through knowing, using and applying

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Constantinou, Jo
Clark, Alison
Renzulio, Aleks
Dowland, Colin
Issue Date
Educational Level
ISCED Level 1 Primary education
Curriculum Area
Geographical Setting
United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland
Background: The study aimed to improve the ability and confidence of lower ability Year 3 Maths pupils in using calculation strategies, particularly number bonds to 10, through a multisensory approach. The effectiveness of different teaching strategies was examined, and the study allowed for experimentation and observation of individual student learning.
Aims: The aim of the study was to develop lower ability Year 3 Maths pupils' confidence and ability to use number bonds to 10 as a calculation strategy through practical resources and discussion. The study allowed for experimentation and observation of individual learning needs.
Methods: The participants are Year 3 pupils, including two case students (one EAL and one easily distracted), and three teachers (AC, JC, and AR/CD) conducting a lesson study to develop calculation strategies. The teachers shared responsibility, tried new ideas, and used Numicon more often. The lessons were a week apart, affecting continuity, but allowed for realistic understanding. The lesson study involved developing calculation strategies for a lower ability Year 3 Maths group using visual cues, rhymes, whole class teaching, partner work, guided group work, and Numicon.
Findings: The project highlighted the need for more practical resources and opportunities for students to explain their understanding. Planning and teaching difficulties arose due to scheduling, but the experience provided valuable insights into individual student learning needs.
Implications: The study found that practical and visual resources, such as Numicon, can support children's understanding of calculation strategies, but individual needs must be considered. The study also highlighted the need for training and dedicated planning time for teachers. The experience of observing one pupil closely during the lessons gave the teacher insight into how different children learn, but also highlighted the vast needs of every single child in the class.
Keywords (free text)
lesson study , mathematics , primary education , number bonds , Numicon
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