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Numeracy In Fs2


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I'm the numeracy coordinator for our primary school (I teach Y6), and I'm having an ongoing discussion with the FS2 coordinator about whether FS2 children should have an 'exercise' book for some of their work in the Summer term, rather than a load of photocopies with observation sheets attached.

 

I realise you need evidence to base your assessment for the ELGs on, but surely it would show progression more easily if they had a book each?

 

How do FS2 practitioners get the children to record? Is drawing or stamping pictures in their books outdated now, or still acceptable?

 

Help!

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Hi, I teach in a Reception class and we use numeracy books to record in usually based on a practical activity eg draw how many bean bags went in the bucket and how many missed how many altogether. There are some good examples of children's written numeracy work in Reception on the ncaction pages. We also stick any worksheets or observations in the numeracy books so that it is easier to keep a record of progress.

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Hi there zrh2 and welcome. Im sure you have come to the right place to ask your question and I hope that between us we can help you.

I have been a whole schol maths coordinator so I understand your concerns from a whole school point of view.

Our reception classes do have books but there isnt pagea and pages of work sheets in them. We do do lots of observatiosn and also take photgraphs because a lot of the maths we do is practical. We also do lots of children recording their own maths, much in the way that Martin Hughes describes in children and Number' from many moons ago. We then either put these in the book or photocopy them . When I did book trawls, I used to look at the displays as part of that because a lot of maths work was on display, and so I looked for a maths learning environment. what maths was displayed. Was it all work sheets. Was maths vocabulary displayed or were there annotated pieces of work that included maths language.

 

Do you use the key objectives spreadsheet or similar? To a certain degree you do have to have faith in your colleagues if they are experienced, and those asssessments in the summer term can be useful fro seeing where the chidlren are. there will also be information on the foundation stage profile which you teachers will be completing. You could ask them to show you these and how they relate to the key objectives from the NNS.

 

personaly I dont advocate the stamping of pictures in books wit a space for the chidlren to write 'how many'. I wouldnt have a problem with drawing pictures if there is a context. For example , draw how many peole were at the teddy bears picnic/ on the bus/ in the water.

I have had some brilliant maths work come out of play situations, some of which has been recorded and some not.

 

I hope that is of some help to you. do get back to us again if it doesnt make sense.

:o

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  • 2 weeks later...

I'm pleased you posted this question on this forum - it is very difficult for non-FS practitioners to "tune in" to the FS way of working but I think you need to unpick exactly what evidence you would get from a formal workbook/worksheet collection that can't be provided by observation records, photographs and most importantly the FS teachers assessments. I personally do not have any recording book for either Numeracy or Literacy in the FS - recording is done (if the children decide to record) either on whiteboards (photocopied for evidence if needed) or on paper from the writing area - again photocopied and added to assessment folders. The FS does not make any requirement for formal recording - more able children may do so but again they are encouraged to do so in their own way. (Foundation Stage Profile does not mention recording numbers formally until Scale Point 9 which is for Early Learning Goals exceeded - i.e. working within Level 1) I am biased in answering this question as I am very firmly in the camp of "worksheets BAD!" - I believe very much in teachers finding more creative, fun and practical ways for children to access and show their understanding of all subjects - I am currently Acting Head and am setting my staff the challenge of justifying in planning exactly why they have chosen a worksheet over any other way - if they can convince me then it stays - if not we don't use it - Harsh, maybe but it has been very effective and I have to say that so far our photocopying total is half its usual quantity - staff are actually positive and have said it's been a good exercise! Gone off the point a bit and got onto my soapbox. Sorry.

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Very well said Angela!

 

I encourage my reception teachers not to have recorded work for maths whenever possible and limit it in year one too! Children of such a young age learn maths by actually 'doing it' and in no other way!

 

Lots of photographic evidence and display work are excellent, as well as teacher assessments. I do always have plain paper or white boards available for children to record in their own way if they want to (I must say that I encourage the more able children to do this).

 

I know all of that has already been said, but I just wanted to reiterate it, as the thought of YR children using exercise books, or even worse, worksheets sent a shiver down my spine!

 

Have a good 1/2 term everybody

Sallyx

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  • 2 weeks later...

:(:(:oxD:( Work sheets................NO worksheets, exercise books................................HOW WONDERFUL only if my children lived near your schools ..............how refreshing to hear the children learn by doing.................... thank you thank you :D:D:D:D

 

julia

Kindergarten manager

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We're proud of our no worksheet / no exercise book zone too... grasping the concepts in loads of practical, fun and role play ways is the best way to help the children build their confidence and love maths. I hated maths at school because it seemed totally detached from the real world....we don't need to do that to our Reception children do we ? Our children do record such as when we were planning our Farm trip we made a class list of how many cameras, plasters, bottles of water etc. to take. and recording in their own way is really interesting to gauge their understanding.

 

NO WORKSHEETS OR EXERCISE BOOKS !!!!

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I agree Galleon, I think its really important for children to have the opportunity to record their own maths in their own way, not to say, no recording in reception.

Its what and how they record that matters, not whether or not they do. I do get quite concerned about the assumption that all recording is bad in Foundation when I dont think that is what we really mean. I think we are quite rightly concenred about formal recording that is often expected of us.

The FS does make reference to recording numbers (or beginning to), in their own way, though pictures, tallies etc, and children need to be encouraged to do this just as much as we encourage them in emergent writing. It is a phase that children cant just miss out, they need to write their own maths before they can write conventional maths.

 

Children often do want to write about their maths, and it does help to clarrify their thinking, but we have to encourge them to do it their way, and when they want to. I find that even those children who always shy away from writing activities, want to record maths.

In my days as a MACO, we did this across the school, and the difference in the children's self confidenec even within a year was amazing. they used to say to me 'we like this kind of maths....where we can to it OUR way'. They were then ready to move on the standard ways of recording that we call our conventions.

 

 

Ill get off my soap box now. :o

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  • 1 month later...

Hi Angela,

 

I was really interested to read your views on the children's recording of their learning. On the one hand I think brilliant, I totally agree (having seen some children put off by an activity because they have to write about it afterwards), but I am concerned about the expectations of parents and Ofsted etc. What happens if a child does not wish to record and ends up leaving reception unable to write a simple sentence although if, for instance, encouraged to write weekly news, this child would achieve simple sentence structure? Does this happen?

 

One day I would like to become a teacher but when I see all the pressures of Pscales (which are what exactly?) and profiles (I thought that was a side view of your face), that many teachers talk about, I wonder whether perhaps being a TA is enough. I would love to encourage the children to direct their own learning but am worried that Ofsted would not be too impressed with the results. Is the evidence needed open to interpretation?

 

What I really need is an idiot guide to being a teacher that sets out all of the requirements and criteria necessary so I know what is expected but am able to decide on my own way of achieving this. I would like to hear your views as you obviously have loads of experience.

 

Julia

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