,Dear Parents, As you are aware, there have been changes since September 2014 to the National Curriculum. The new National Curriculum from 2014 states in regards to maths:
By the end of year 2, pupils should be able to count in steps of 2, 3, and 5 from 0, and in tens from any number, forward and backward
By the end of year 2, pupils should be able to recall and use multiplication and division facts for the 2, 5 and 10 multiplication tables, including recognising odd and even numbers
By the end of year 4, pupils should be able to recall multiplication and division facts for multiplication tables up to 12x12
There will no longer be a separate calculator paper in Key Stage 2 SATs so mental calculations are gaining even greater prominence in primary schools.
Nick Gibb, Schools Minister, has reiterated his proposal to introduce a ‘multiplication check’ alongside the other KS2 SATs from 2018/19
These changes mean it is important for the children to learn their times tables facts and to be able to recall them quickly and accurately. To support their learning of times tables we are pleased to inform you, we will be introducing the Times Table Challenge in school for years 2 - 6 and will give children a distinct advantage in their end of Key Stage SATs tests. Children in year 1 will only partake in the challenge if and when their class teacher feels they are able to access it well enough.
Every child will be assessed by their class teacher and placed on a Times Table Challenge which is appropriate to their ability. There are four awards to complete:
Bronze - 2x, 5x, 10x and 3x
Silver - 4x, 8x, 6x and 9x
Gold - 7x, 11x and 12x
Albert Einstein Award - Beat the Professor's time
The children will take this home and will complete it as part of their maths home learning. To progress onto the next award, your child needs to complete a timed five or ten minute (depending on their stage) test which will be given once a week during mathematics and achieve full marks twice. The reason for the limited time is to ensure children are doing a mental calculation rather than working it out with support. Once an award has been completed, your child will then be given the opportunity to master their times table knowledge by attempting the PLUS awards. Here children will look at using their ‘inverse’ knowledge of division. It is also important that children understand the relationship between multiplication and division and, by knowing their times table facts they can use them to help solve division sums and become a ‘Multiplication Master’
In the past, different years within our school have had different ways of running and teaching multiplication and division; however, to have a whole school challenge ensures continuity across all year groups.
We would like all children to succeed at their Times Table Challenge! Your child will continue to work within school to learn their times tables but we would also like children to be encouraged to practise them at home. To help them practise, you'll find the full set of Times Table Challenges on our website. Each booklet will contain guidance and practice resources to aid and support your child’s learning.
The ‘Elite’ challenges will follow the same times table progression as the initial challenges but will also bring into play knowledge of multiplying and dividing by base 10 multiples. Further stages will be added throughout the year to include 10s, 100s and 1000s as well as decimals.