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Planning For Mathematical Development


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Hi! I was just wondering how other people plan for mathematical development as i am revising our current planning this year. Does anybody use the Abacus scheme? This is one i have looked at and was wondering what other people thought about it. Are their any other good schemes for Reception that are being used? Many thanks xx :D

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Hi Rachael-louise and welcome to the forum :D

I don't use a scheme as such but I generally follow the NNS order of objectives. Have you seen the DfES publication "Mathematical activities for the foundation stage"? You can find it here

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Hi, I use the Rigby Numeracy Focus maths scheme ( in a very loose way). What i really like about it is the discovery table activities which I often use on my Maths table. It has good play based activities which encourage talking. I've had mine quite a while (I got it from Amazon as I'm not sure Rigby still publish it!!)

You may find that with the onset of the new (sorry, revised!) strategy new schemes will be published. I used Abacus when i taught Year 2 and found it far too easy for the children and constantly used the year 3 books. I don't know if that helps

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I liked the Abacus scheme when I had my own class, it is available from hamiltotrust as it forms the basis of their maths planning if you wanted t trial it without purchasing.

We also had Collins but i really didnt like that as it was far too prescribed.

 

Beam have some good resources too.

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I'm curious to enquire, to what degree and how you 'allocate' time to Numeracy and Liiteracy in Reception at the beginning of the year?

On my teaching practice I have only experienced the end term and there appears to be such a big focus in my present position that Numeracy is sadly lacking in the curriculum (something I hope to put right!)

With such a big push on phonics, reading & writing .... how do you impliment the maths? Through other activities? or give equal presidence of?

Skylight

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:) That sounds like good advice.... a question ...

 

If you were to have an intake for 1/2 day each (am & pm) for the first 2 weeks .... folowed by an introduction to full day by spring, autumn & summer births (meaning whole class not full until after half term) ............ how would you impliment a balance between literacy & numeracy? You have an average class size of 30, with 2 severe (but without 1-1) SEN children, and a TA to help/ support.

Instinct tells me not to worry about it . get to know the children etc. however, school and Ofsted lurking tells me I need to 'cover' my back. I the grand norm of things I think I would 'go in for the kill' once the class is attending as a whole/ & I have established those fundimental routines and relationships!

If you have a weekly timetable that you could share, that might help. See if I can phathom out how to put my proposed one on for view! :o

Aut_weekly_timetable.doc

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our last OFSTED was 2nd week in September and although its going back a few years now, I think the principles will still be the same. They were far mroe interetsd in our settling in routines than our curiculum coverage, even coming on home visists with us.

 

I think you are right to spend a fiar bit of the first few weeks establishing routines and we put this clearly on our planning. This is even more important if your children have not attended any other setting before you (most of ours come from our school nursery so know the school and staff well already). You cant get that time back afterwards when theya re all in (ours all in FT by 2nd week!). If the children are PT to start with you could alternate CLL and MD?

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When I taught in a reception class the first 2 weeks were a settling in period with lots of circle time/walks around school to familiarise the children with the building and staff.

 

One week I would work with groups for numeracy while the TA worked with groups for literacy the next week we would swap roles.

Numeracy concentrated on counting rhymes and looking for shapes etc around the school simple counting, special numbers for the child eg their age their house number how many people live in their house.

Usually start literacy by getting the child to draw a picture of themselves and 'write' their name unaided for their all about me book followed this by pictures of their family child compose the caption for adult scribe and pictures of their friends.

 

Life is much simpler now we are a FSU as we dont have a settling in period as the children are familiar with the routines and children are full time from the first full week

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Thanks for responses.

Feel a little down today, trying to visualise how I am going to cover what has been requested, in the short sessions children will be attending. That is: 1 phoneme a day, stuck into sound book to take home each night, 2 reading books & logged/ comments in home reading record, 5 HFW a week (assess & change as approp.) SEAL, Golden Rule book/ J.Mosely, Entry assessments. ..... How to manage this and establish routine (washing hands, toileting, snack time etc), in a clam & relaxed fashion spending quality time getting to know the children appears frustratingly difficult. (and dare I say it ... feel we are pushing the children too fast too soon).

All I know is that by establishing and investing that time at the beginning of open, free choice & routine, strikes the way forward (even though I have no experience of it to date!)

I wish I could come and work at your school!!!

Will do my best to introduce my thoughts on the matter - but feel I have to bid my time and experience the first run ...to improve & judge.

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On a more positive note! ..... Mundia ... your comments of putting routines into planning ... could you give me a really clear specific example? (don't want to sound silly, but do you literally mean, teach children how to use tiolet & wash hands etc)

Even better still, have you got an example of your first week plans/ timetable?

Consider me a very little bear thinking of 'things' that are now 'thingish'! Sometimes I think I think too hard and loose clarity with the 'opposition'! O lord .. I'm really loosing it now!

 

Couldn't agree more Marion. Good to at least hear confirmation my thoughts on the matter are not necessarily wrong (just need to convince my mentor)

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hi skylight. Being a bear of little brain, I know how you feel!!

 

I think too much is being expected of you, who is aksing you to do all that? Can you negotiate from a child initaited entitlement point of view if nothing else?

 

Planning wise Ive nt done it yet (miles behind!!) but no we dont go into the detail although when we were last OFSTEDded we wrote a 'rationalle' which stated wjat sorts of things we considered to be part of settling in (eg tileting clothing knowing where thngs are how to handle equipment, what routines do we follow etc) In our early planning we just indicate that routines relationships and settling in is the most importnat part of the first few weeks and have much less dircetd planning. Timetabling was the same, it is very 'rough' for the early weeks, and we treated it very flexibly.

 

are you an NQT? You shoudl be getting support from a mentor or colleague with the planning or is ther peviosu planning you can look at and use as a model?

 

Hope yu arefeeling less overwhelmed now

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Thanks Mundia & Marion,

I think this forum is a blessing as it makes me not feel alone so much. Yes I am an NQT & I do have a mentor who gave me the 'shopping list' and a suggested timetable. Old plans are there to reference - but probrably not a good idea to follow.

It's all a little strange the format for planning, alongside some of the references I've been asked to make (I feel).

Think the expectations are in a completely different league to my final placement (14 different home languages & lots of play based language development etc). Begining to know which I prefer ..... rather fast! Just makes me feel sad at the moment because of the obvious ... early year development & imagination is not strengthened by this approach. Need to get angry and do something about it instead of being a wimp and wanting to put my head in the sand.

Oh well ........ tomorrow is another day & at least I've now got the bulk of it done.

All the best

a tired bear with not much of a brain left functioning!

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Wow, skylight, if the time next to your last post is "real time" I am not surprised you're tired! What happened to work/life balance? Go get some sleep!!!

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Hopefully the day is looking a bit brighter now Skylight...

 

have you asked your emntor when exactly you for in obserivng the children (thinkng about the requiemenets of the profiel?) You mght want to dangle some of the requiremenst in front of her to argue your case?

 

Dont feel that you are wimpy at all, if you want to get angry, go and punch a few pillows or whatever you do to keep calm(I do tai chi..works wonders...). Then accpet that there may well be things you have to do in your NQT year.. perhpas things that you even dont agree with, but chnage what you can and accpet what you cant...at least this year..

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I think its really difficult to do what you know is right in your NQT year when it is against accepted school practice so dont feel you are being a wimp..........change what you can now and think how you can impose your own stamp in the future :D

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thanks for kind and comforting words. Agree with everything. Don't partically want to get on a saop box just now ... need to experience and gain insight over the year to impliment change for the best. (doesn't stop me from expressing my opinions though!)

I guess it might make me feel more justified if I didn't like or respect the opinions of those around me ... they are genuinely a good set of people, willing to listen & then do what they think best. I am an NQT! one step at a time in the right direction is the way i will work (however small that may be ... at least it's in THE right direction!!!)

Thought about that last night Mundia ... mainly because I was thinking of the children coming in and having 1/2 free choice before registration. Table top activities specifically set out to compliment learning in process and topic etc. This worked well in last placement and proved to be excellent in observation (made the morning more relaxed). But moreover - children reaaly learnt independance, gave time for contact, and they could clear up etc.

When I proposed thins idea it was met with 'well i don't know what the children will gain from this' etc. but was left up to me to decide. Feel underconfident, but do recall the teacher of that previous class saying Ofsted were really impressed with how independant etc. children were.

Probrably making a bigger thing out of it all .... going to get an early night. Sorry to anyone searching this lead... think it's strayed somewhat.

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Skylight, if you have seen something work well in another setting, do not be afraid to try it in your own classroom. You do need to have some regard to school practices as Mundia and Marion have already said but you will also have opportunity to develop your own.

 

Good luck. Do try and enjoy this last week and get some rest!

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