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Reassurance needed please

(10 Posts)
mogmum Wed 23-Apr-14 16:07:14

My DD is Yr 5 and they have just been doing assessments in school. Literacy is fine but she is worried about her maths as she has been told she is a 3b.
I have told her not to worry, and that she is doing fine. her teacher hasnt said there is a problem either, so am i correct in thinking that to finish year 5 on a 3a which she is close to is ok isnt it?

tiggytape Wed 23-Apr-14 16:42:52

A 4b is the expected level for the end of Year 6 and making 2 sub levels of progress between now and then is very realistic. It means DD would be exactly on track to achieve that.

What might matter more is how she has progressed since Year 2. Do you have any concersnt that she is struggling in one particular area or has she made good progress since her Year 2 results?

mogmum Wed 23-Apr-14 17:24:48

Hi thanks for replying.
Yr 2 she was a 2c which I knew was slightly below expectations. There aren't any major problems only that she doesn't quite grasp concepts as quickly as everyone else but if she has extra practice eg mathletics then she gains more confidence.
She has always made good progress but for some reason she has it in her head that she isn't doing as well as she should

Ferguson Thu 24-Apr-14 19:46:24

The following info is really for younger children, but if there is anything she is unsure of it may possibly help to clarify some of the basics:


Practical things are best for grasping number concepts - bricks, Lego, beads, counters, money, shapes, weights, measuring, cooking.

Do adding, taking away, multiplication (repeated addition), division (sharing), using REAL OBJECTS as just 'numbers' can be too abstract for some children.

Number Bonds of Ten forms the basis of much maths work, so try to learn them. Using Lego or something similar, use a LOT of bricks (of just TWO colours, if you have enough) lay them out so the pattern can be seen of one colour INCREASING while the other colour DECREASES. Lay them down, or build up like steps.


ten of one colour none of other
nine of one colour one of other
eight of one colour two of other
seven of one colour three of other

etc, etc

then of course, the sides are equal at 5 and 5; after which the colours 'swap over' as to increasing/decreasing.

To learn TABLES, do them in groups that have a relationship, thus:

x2, x4, x8

x3, x6, x12

5 and 10 are easy

7 and 9 are rather harder.

Starting with TWO times TABLE, I always say: "Imagine the class is lining up in pairs; each child will have a partner, if there is an EVEN number in the class. If one child is left without a partner, then the number is ODD, because an odd one is left out."

Use Lego bricks again, lay them out in a column of 2 wide to learn 2x table. Go half way down the column, and move half the bricks up, so that now the column is 4 bricks wide. That gives the start of 4x table.

Then do similar things with 3x and 6x.

With 5x, try and count in 'fives', and notice the relationship with 'ten' - they will alternate, ending in 5 then 10.

It is important to try and UNDERSTAND the relationships between numbers, and not just learn them 'by rote'.

I am sorry it seems complicated trying to explain these concepts, but using Lego or counters should make understanding easier.

An inexpensive solar powered calculator (no battery to run out!) can help learn tables by 'repeated addition'. So: enter 2+2 and press = to give 4. KEEP PRESSING = and it should add on 2 each time, giving 2 times table.

There are good web sites, which can be fun to use :


juniper44 Thu 24-Apr-14 23:25:53

If she ended Year 2 as a 2C, then her expected outcome for the end of year 6 is a 4C. To be a 3a now, at Easter, means she has 4 terms to make one sub level's progress to maintain her trajectory. That should be easily manageable.

I'd say she's working above expectation, based on her year 2 results. As you said, 2c is slightly below average for Year 2, and a 3a at this point in year 5 is expected.

mogmum Fri 25-Apr-14 09:40:43

juniper44 thank you so much for all that information. i will definately go over that with her just to ensure the basics are there.
Its also good to hear that she is doing ok levels wise as I have been telling her that she has but its always good to have that from someone else if you know what I mean.

Martorana Fri 25-Apr-14 09:45:59

I would talk to the teacher though. If she is feeling that she isn't doing as well as she should,you may find that the school has higher expectations for her, and have suggested that she could be doing better.

PastSellByDate Fri 25-Apr-14 12:33:03

Hi mogmum:

Juniper's list is a great start but I would seriously talk to the teacher at your next parent/ teacher meeting or make an appointment if there isn't an end of year meeting and try to work out what the problem is for maths:

needs to solidly learn times tables?
slow calculation speed?
regularly makes minor errors in addition/ subtraction?
Doesn't understand how to calculate area/ perimeter?
Doesn't understand fractions?
Doesn't understand percentages/ proportions?
Doesn't understand mean/ median/ mode/ range?

Find out where the 'crunch' issue is and try your best to work on that over the summer.

If it is a calculation skill - I sincerely swear by practice. There are all sorts of free worksheets you can download:

maths drills:

worksheet works: - this is still Beta so there may be glitches - avoid english worksheets as this is a US website with slightly different spellings/ use of grammar.

or you could consider workbooks or subscribing to on-line tutorials/ practice sites. I'm a huge fan of mathsfactor (and have freuqently posted praise for it) but others on MN have praised Komodo Maths/ Khan academy/ Maths Whizz and Mathletics - just use your search engine to find out more.

I know mathsfactor has maths summer school with all sorts of resources to help improve maths skills: - perhaps reviewing Year 5 skills on this might give your child confidence and if she finishes that she can go on to working toward Y6 skills? It also looks like these are on sale now - so camp membership is now £9.99 rather than the usually £14.99.

My DD1 turned out to be a very visual learner - who responded best to learning with a video game style format or doing it herself - and no amount of the teacher telling her what to do seemed to get through. She really took to mathsfactor and the practise really made a huge difference - improving her confidence and speed for calculation skills.

As many have already said - your DC is most likely on tract to achieve L4 at KS2 SATs (which is the government threshold for Y6 KS2 achievement) so you and she shouldn't be too worried - but perhaps a bit more practise at home and maybe more explanation on how to perform calculations may help. Sincerley, 15 - 20 minutes a day over the summer may not seem like a lot - but it adds up - and suddenly those tricky x7 times tables or dividing 3 digits by 2 digits doesn't seem that difficult any more.


PastSellByDate Fri 25-Apr-14 12:42:47

Forgot to add the usual list of great maths websites:

ADORE and HIGH RECOMMEND Woodlands Junior school Maths Zone: - absolutely free - just find the topic you want to work on and then select the on-line game you find appropriate/ interesting or just want to try out. I find it best to kind of research the games first and find the ones pitched at the right level - so DD1 wasn't too disheartened (no fun if they're all too hard) but still provided a bit of a challenge.

If your school subscribes to My Maths or education city - take advantage of the free games there. These subscriptions will run over the summer - so why not use them! has all sorts of great free games to build skills:

Math Champs also has all sorts of great free games to build skills - times tables are a bit spread out so you'll have to hunt through the age bands 5-7/ 7-9 and 9 - 11.

Cool maths for kids also has some great games: - the website is a bit clunky & doesn't have a search facility - so best to have a bit of an explore and see what it out there and what you like. I tend to bookmark games I like on my browser.


mogmum Fri 25-Apr-14 22:05:11

Thank you all so much. You have given me so much to work with. I had a little chat with her earlier and it is a confidence issue so we are going to do a bit each day until she feels happier.
I will make an appointment to see her teacher in the next couple of weeks though.
Thanks again for all your help it's really appreciated

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