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Why isn't maths valued in key stage one?

(43 Posts)
pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:04:12

and does this change as they get older?

My DS started school knowing a handful of sounds and recognising his name. No more than that. He could count. He understood one more and one less and could do simple sums in his head. Pretty typical I would guess.

In YR he has made what seems like massive strides in reading, writing, drawing, sports, he is more considerate of others, loads of progress on loads of stuff, I am happy with that. Yet they seem to have been taught no extra maths. We had a parents evening on what to expect in year 1 and again there seems to be not much emphasis on maths. He learns more maths by through talking things through at home with us. Is this because reading is the gateway to other subjects and they need to focus on this at this age? Is it just my school? I am bemused as you need good maths to get the best jobs grin

I am just sure the kids are capable of a lot more than they are asking them to do and wonder why they don't spend more time on it.

WofflingOn Tue 18-Sep-12 21:06:05

It isn't the case in my school.

kim147 Tue 18-Sep-12 21:07:13

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:07:38

Am also aware that I don't necessarily know what goes on at school.......

pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:09:37

So how much time would they spend on it in a day typically in year 1 or 2?

For example I am not a fan of homework for little ones but for maths there is a worksheet once every half term, but reading every day. Relatively that is quiute a big difference?

pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:12:38

Also, we get spellings for year 1, if they can learn all those words, surely they could learn all their times tables by the end of year 1 and then they would have good basics in place to get onto some more fun number stuff?

kim147 Tue 18-Sep-12 21:13:29

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

kim147 Tue 18-Sep-12 21:16:48

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:17:42

Doing stuff at home is fine, and we do because it's fun but am wondering if it just me that agrees that there is a difference in priority.

Why is homework in key stage 1 mainly reading and spelling? Maths needs just as much practice to be great at it.

pinkappleby Tue 18-Sep-12 21:21:26

The link is good - I like the way there seems to be more emphasis on what numbers are and how they interact rather than methods to be applied blindly.

Another example from our own school - phonics or might be called literacty, not sure, streamed across year groups. Maths not. Yet surely as much variety in ability. Is our school just a bit rubbish with maths?

PatriciaHolm Tue 18-Sep-12 22:28:33

Our school does maths and literacy pretty much every day, so it's not universal! Both are streamed across year groups, with extension as well.

Hulababy Tue 18-Sep-12 22:29:59

I work in an infant school. Was Y1, now Y2. We spend the same amoiunt of time on literacy and numeracy over the week. About an hour a day on each, some days more on one than the other - but evens out over the week.

Ample Tue 18-Sep-12 22:46:22

^surely they could learn all their times tables by the end of year 1'
I think for this you should see your statement 'Am also aware that I don't necessarily know what goes on at school.......' grin

Maths is done in Reception, only they don't see it as maths per se. In Y1 maths is taught daily and this is increased in Y2.

I agree with kim147 in that that maths is baking, weighing, measuring, counting, comparing, using a clock, money and mathematical language and not parrot-fashion times tables.

juniper904 Tue 18-Sep-12 23:39:32

By the end of year 3, we expect children to know their 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10 times tables. So to know them by year 1 seems a tad unrealistic!

Unless the school is not following guidelines, they should be teaching maths at least 4 times a week. Maybe he doesn't identify the lessons as maths, and so the literacy is more obvious to him?

rrbrigi Wed 19-Sep-12 10:19:53

Usually in Reception the children have one session "Math" a day. But math is not just about counting, adding up numbers. Math is about a lot else, e.g.: measuring, 2d and 3d objects, applying numbers on objects, patterns, coins, etc... They learn all of these things and more under "math" in Reception. So perhaps your son won’t learn more on counting, but will learn measuring or will learn the 3d shapes, or will be able to apply his counting on different situation, will be able to use correct math language. Of course they would be capable to learn the time tables in Reception, but then school would need to increase the 1math section to 3 or 4 in a day, than they would not have time to do a bit of reading, spelling, science, music, PE and etc...

But perhaps reading is really a bit more important than Math, because reading is the basic for all the other subject.

amidaiwish Wed 19-Sep-12 10:26:08

in yr1, DDs were getting maths homework 1 x week. one week set tasks on mathletics and one week a worksheet. in reception it was more random, more like once a half term I think.

they do seem to put more emphasis on literacy in yr and y1, esp re homework, though it definitely picks up in yr1.

re tables, DD1 had to know them all by end of yr3. yr 2 they learn 2s, 5s and 10s (though were counting in 2s, 5s and 10s in yr1 so had kind of done it already)

Silibilimili Wed 19-Sep-12 10:44:23

I agree with your posts OP. I think Maths should be given the same priority as English as it is also a basis for every day life. I teach my dd at home (for Maths, 10 mins a day), just like we do reading for 10 mins.

Startailoforangeandgold Wed 19-Sep-12 10:57:55

I'm not sure why more maths doesn't come home.

Maybe schools think parents are scared of maths, or that they will teach their DCs different methods.

DD1 found daily reading a real struggle, but she's good at maths. The very occasional maths homework was such a lovely change.

Also I think schools do loads of practical stuff and lots of repetition of basic concepts. I suspect that moving the class on at the speed of the brightest few leads to real problems for the majority later.

Learning paper and pencil methods by route and memorising tables is one thing. A proper understanding of place value and what multiplication means is far more useful in the end.

CitrusyOne Wed 19-Sep-12 10:57:57

Maths and English (literacy) will both be ring taught daily in English LEA run schools. I think there's more emphasis on literacy in ks1 because of all the basics that need putting into place so that chn can access the rest of the education system. They need to be able to decode words (phonics- 10-15 mins of discrete phonics teaching). They need to comprehend simple stories and information texts (guided reading- about 20-30 mins a day). They need to be able to hold a pencil correctly and form letters (handwriting- prob 30 mins a week). And then on top of ths they'll have their hour of literacy lessons a day, where they get taught about simple story structures, how to construct sentences, use punctuation, do drama and role play, write and create stories of their own. All this comes under the umbrella of'literacy' and is a vital grounding for ks2 and beyond. There probably is a little bit of extra Maths going on outside of Maths lessons, but as a ks2 teacher I think it's easier for a ks1 child to meet the expectations in Maths - I think there is more emphasis on English because there's more to squeeze in at ks1. Does that help, or have I rambled again ?

DeWe Wed 19-Sep-12 11:22:47

Maths homework was either so boringly easy at KS1 level, or a "mathematical game" which took a very long time and wasn't much more interesting. Dd2 used to do dd1's maths homework when dd1 was in year 1 and 2-she's 3 years younger. I was very glad that they dropped maths homework by the time dd2 came along, I can always find them interesting maths games at home.

Ds was in reception last year. They did quite a lot of maths, but he generally didn't realise it because he thought they were playing games and stuff. He did board games (counting), weighing (using scales/which is bigger or smaller), shopping (money adding and taking away for change) counting in 2s, 5s, 10s (times tables), number square games (adding 2 digit number together)... but if you asked him what he'd done in maths/with numbers he said "nothing".

steppemum Wed 19-Sep-12 13:06:37

when we had home visist before reception, one of the activities they did with dd was to see if she could recognise and sort numbers 1-5. They also got her to draw a picture and some other stuff.

maths definitely every day here. times tables homework from Y2. Every weekend literacy and numeracy homework ys 1-6 (and I hate it, ruins every weekend, oh the battles....)

steppemum Wed 19-Sep-12 13:08:59

DeWe - we had this problem at old school, but here they give out about 3 levels across the class so it is more ability appropriate homework.

Massive imbalance still though, maths activity = 10 mins. literacy activity = 3 hours (well, 2.5 hours of complaining and 1/2 hour of writing)

noramum Wed 19-Sep-12 14:01:06

At a meeting before Summer holiday we were told reading, writing and maths is taught each day for a total of 45 minutes in the morning.

We should also soon receive a workbook with weekly sheets supporting what was taught in school.

In the half-term-topic newsletter the teacher also stated that parents should support maths by including it into daily activities and boardgames.

So it may very much depend on the school.

WowOoo Wed 19-Sep-12 14:10:53

My son told me yesterday that they didn't do maths at all. They just played this cool game about rounding up numbers hmm

He still doesn't realise that lots of these games and activities are actually maths.

I am quite sure it's done every day at my son's school.

Silibilimili Wed 19-Sep-12 14:15:07

I think the problem here is the communication by the teacher/ school. If we knew what they did and maybe a little about how each day, we would be more relaxed parents?

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