In 2017 we started Number Sense Maths with the idea of developing the phonics equivalent for maths: a systematic and structured number fact teaching programme that would bring the rigour to teaching early calculation that phonics brings to teaching early reading. A key starting point was an article Clare wrote on achieving fluency in addition and subtraction facts for the NCETM Primary Magazine. This was based on her research and classroom observations over the last 10 years, including maths lesson observations in Shanghai.
There is a wealth of research evidence telling us about the mathematical development of young children. Our aim has been to use this understanding, along with our experience teaching maths and maths teachers, and parenting young children through KS1 and beyond, to develop a highly visual number facts teaching programme, led by content not technology, that is straightforward for teachers and parents, achieves results for children, and enables communication and engagement between schools and families. We believe Number Sense Maths does just that, providing all children with solid foundations for a lifelong enjoyment of maths and confidence with number.
Following a successful pilot in 25 schools during the academic year 2018/2019, we launched the Number Sense Maths programme to all UK schools in January 2020 through our online Teacher Portal. The feedback has been hugely positive and it has been particularly rewarding to hear how useful schools have found the programme during lockdown, including some schools who have been live streaming the animations to teach children and parents at home.
In June 2020 we launched resources for parents and tutors to use with children at home, based on key elements of the schools teaching programme. Number Sense Maths At Home includes 9 workbooks supported by flashcards, online animations and practical resources. Designed for use with children from age 4 years and up, and for anyone stuck on counting to add and subtract.
In October 2020 we started running free training on number fact teaching and have really enjoyed meeting everyone who has attended the sessions. We are now also running bespoke CPD training for schools, and January 2021 will see the first of our six week in-depth training programmes, a course which will run 3 times a year. Please do contact us if we can help support your school with its number fact teaching, or if you have any questions at all.
Clare Christie and Clare Hawkins, November 2020