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Professional Skills numeracy test

(45 Posts)
withaspongeandarustyspanner Fri 18-May-18 13:00:10

I'm starting my teacher training in September, and still have to pass my numeracy test.

I struggle with maths (panic, actually) and I could do with a good book to get me through it. Every time I think I've found one, I find a bad review and I don't know which one to get.

Any recommendations?


Acopyofacopy Fri 18-May-18 16:58:41

“Passing the Numeracy Skills Test” by Mark Patmore got me through, plus doing all the online practice questions.
My dc’s primary school maths teacher also gave me some tips for mental maths blush

withaspongeandarustyspanner Fri 18-May-18 18:03:34

You see, this one was recommended to me but had some awful reviews online. That is was OK but I'd need something additional, too.

Floralnomad Fri 18-May-18 18:06:38

My ds just did practice tests online , infact we all did them together to help him along , he isn’t bad at maths just didn’t like the speed element .

yellowtoys Fri 18-May-18 18:11:45

I watched a few YouTube videos, there are some very good ones. I also found that the actual test was easier than the practice ones.

HeadsDownThumbsUpEveryone Fri 18-May-18 18:15:41

“Passing the Numeracy Skills Test” by Mark Patmore got me through, plus doing all the online practice questions.

This ^^ The book was great, ignore the poor reviews people are much more likely to leave a bad review than a good one. I would also agree that the online tests were super helpful it gave me the chance to work on being quicker and made the experience less stressful when I came to sit the real test.

ohreallyohreallyoh Fri 18-May-18 18:17:08

Are you near your uni? Some offer tuition to help people get through it, I paid for 6 hours of tuition from someone who knew the tests and the requirements and passed first time. I am pretty sure I’d ha e failed otherwise.

HopeClearwater Fri 18-May-18 18:25:16

Please tell me you aren’t going into primary school teaching, OP.

Sunshineintheclouds Fri 18-May-18 18:30:17

grin there is always one
No advice op but it took me two attempts it was panic with me but you just have to Stay calm and don't worry if you miss one.

dontaskforthe99 Fri 18-May-18 19:40:09

Do the practice tests available and then watch the videos on you tube which work through all the answers. They are a great help. Also had Patmore book, very useful. I am a bit of a maths phone but spent two days just on the maths prep before the test and.I got my brain in to maths mode and passed first time after last doing o level maths at 1982.

dontaskforthe99 Fri 18-May-18 19:41:06

Phobe not phone !

cliffdiver Fri 18-May-18 19:50:20

hopeclearwater Why? The OP will have intensive training in foundation subjects through Uni seminars and school placements so being weak at a subject at the start of training is really not a problem.

I agree with PP that watching the YouTube tutorials are very helpful.

You can also download practice papers.

I found the actual test a lot easier than the practice questions.

Changebagsandgladrags Fri 18-May-18 21:01:41

I used GA Numerical and did all of their mock tests. I found it really helpful.

Battery about to die sorry for short post

LadyLance Sat 19-May-18 11:51:36

There are some really great you tube videos which help with strategies for being quick. I'd also suggest making sure you know your times tables off by heart, and knowing fraction/percentage/decimal conversions for common fractions e.g. 1/4=25%, 1/3= 33%, 1/5=20% and so on.

Don't forget you will have paper/a whiteboard, so you can make notes and do quick calculations.

You'll also have an onscreen calculator for the second part of the test.

Have you tried any online practice tests and how did you get on?

withaspongeandarustyspanner Sat 19-May-18 16:20:06

HopeClearwater - that's a bit rude. You mean to tell me ALL primary teachers are experts in ALL subjects they teach? It would appear not from the ones I have encountered. I mainly panic with the timed questions. By the amount of books out there, I don't think I'm alone.

Nothing like s bit of support, though, eh? Cheers for that.

withaspongeandarustyspanner Sat 19-May-18 16:27:19

I've done one practice test, didn't do well, I left out all of the mental arithmetic - no clue where to start as it's been so long. I did better at the written questions, though. I'll get that book as it's the one that I've had the most recommendations for.

LadyLance Sat 19-May-18 17:05:14

I found this video pretty useful

You can also find the tests as paper copies on the practice website. This way you could have a go at the mental arithmetic questions without the time pressure. When you've had a look at that, you might find they aren't as bad as you thought.

Don't forget the pass mark is about 60%, and nothing on there is harder than GCSE maths. If you passed that, you can pass this test too.

Hope I get what you're saying if someone has failed the test several times, but when you're first looking at them, the timed aspect can intimidate people even though they are capable of the maths, so I don't think that's a fair comment at this stage.

HopeClearwater Sat 19-May-18 17:48:41

that's a bit rude. You mean to tell me ALL primary teachers are experts in ALL subjects they teach

Of course not. But your two main subjects, the ones you will spend most of your time teaching and on which your pupils will be measured, are English and Maths.

ICantCopeAnymore Sat 19-May-18 17:51:24

Hope, you do realise that a lot of training will surround how to teach English and Maths? Primary maths isn't hard. The tests are the hardest part - teaching it is completely different.

OP, you'll be fine - the book that was mentioned above is great and I'd buy "Maths for Mums and Dads" too, as it shows you the processes you'll need to use now. Both great books.

Good luck!

withaspongeandarustyspanner Sat 19-May-18 18:34:55

I guess you're not a teacher, then Hope, after all you're not really coming across as an advocate for 'Growth Mindset'.

Changebagsandgladrags Sun 20-May-18 10:06:04

I struggled with the numeracy test. I'm a mathematician. However, I still have my weak points - mainly around mental arithmetic.

What I found helpful on the MA was to not let each question affect the next. If I couldn't do it in the time, deep breath...move on.

It's not really about ability, it's more about remembering tricks (eg to convert km to miles, Euro to pounds), being quick and keeping calm.

Also, on the data part, read the questions carefully as it's easy to go wrong

LadyLance Sun 20-May-18 17:02:37

Everything changebags says is great advice. I think some people find the timed aspect makes them flustered in the way being asked a question in RL doesn't.

Skatingfastonthinice Sun 20-May-18 17:19:09

Growth mindset? Give it a couple of years and that will be out of date too.
I think Hope is old, like me, and back in the day, teachers were indeed expected to know stuff like maths and English...including grammatically-correct spoken forms. But times change, we are losing teachers at a rate of knots and we need fresh blood. So good luck, practise your tables and mental maths until they are up to speed and I hope you pass that first of many hoops.

HopeClearwater Sun 20-May-18 17:58:27

I guess you're not a teacher, then Hope

I am. I am disheartened by the number of teachers who struggle with primary school maths. In my experience if they start out as poor mathematicians, they largely remain so, as humans have a tendency to concentrate on the things they are already good at and not the things they need to improve.
‘Growth mindset’? Another piece of jargon which will have disappeared in a few years, as the pp observes.
You find many more would-be teachers admitting to weaknesses in maths than in English. Why is that? I think it is short-changing our children.

ICantCopeAnymore Sun 20-May-18 18:09:55

What a ridiculous opinion, and from a fellow teacher. Some of the most inspiring and brilliant teachers I've ever met have had concerns about their maths skills. Some haven't been the best at quick, mental maths but have engaged their young learners in mathematics and ensured their achievement. They aren't short changing children in the slightest.

Although I don't struggle with English Language, I sometimes spell a word incorrectly on the board, or use the wrong punctuation. The children LOVE pointing out my deliberate mistakes, and it makes me much more human. It also shows them that it is OK to make mistakes, which I think is extremely important for primary aged children.

If the maths is taught well, that's what matters.
Are you an expert in every, single curricular subject? Do you literally know everything about the history of the world, every Bible story, every piece of literature that is recommended in certain planning formats? No. No one does and we learn every day, as the children do. Sometimes I need to thoroughly research a topic before I can teach it. Sometimes I and the children learn together. It's the same for Mathematics.

To be honest, I'm shocked a teacher would feel this way. It's a hard enough job as it is.

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