Nov 13 2013
In recent months, a number of schools have approached us who are in the process of reviewing the whole of their maths provision and are looking for a new way of teaching numeracy. Even though our products work as an effective intervention (and we’ve chosen to call our kits, ‘Beat Dyscalculia), our multi-sensory approach works for any child and learning style and makes sure that children have a good understanding of number concepts rather than just learning by rote. And our boxes fit with the new National Curriculum in Numeracy which will be brought in in 2014. (Read more here)
Here’s a recent case study from Helen Cusack, Head Teacher of St Mary’s Catholic Primary School in Birmingham:
In St. Mary’s, the learning of early mathematics had been characterised by the children engaging with a ‘coded system’ of digits and numbers before gaining a solid grasp of number. Despite much discussion and in spite of some very high results at both KS1 and especially at KS2 there was a growing concern about the quality of real grasp of number amongst our youngest pupils. Believing that concrete and visual learning are necessary before abstract learning can develop we decided to purchase Beat Dyscalculia from Addacus to strengthen this gap.
All teachers and teaching assistants have undergone 6 hours of training, led by facilitator Celia Stone, who developed these resources.
The training offered the staff the opportunity to use all of the equipment and to be taken through Books 1, 2 and 3 very methodically with opportunities to try out some of the pupil exercises, to reflect on the inter relationships between the cards, strips and Addacus (e.g. colour coding) and to discuss what constituted a solid grasp of the number 3(i.e. the ‘threeness’ of three) or 10 or 100.
The staff have been absolutely on board with the philosophy of Beat Dyscalculia from Addacus and are in the process of reformulating their own thinking and teaching of maths. It has become a ‘hot topic’ in the staffroom and the professional support and discussions are truly wonderful. To this end, it has been a very unifying experience.
The staff has piloted the scheme in several year groups. Some of their comments highlight the gaps in numerosity and mathematical understanding of the children as well as raising questions on how best to employ the resources – how to assess which children need it most.
“The children enjoy using the equipment. Its logical links of colour and shape to number digits and dot cards make it easier for children to “see” the quantities they are asked to work with and compare one number with another to answer questions such as, “What is 1 more or less than this number?” The children’s vocabulary has been strengthened by the short narratives about the number 1, 2 and 3 and they enjoy using such vocabulary as “unique, solitary, pair, twin, trio” and they have told their own stories using similar terminology.
One difficulty that has emerged for these children is the use of the symbol =; the word cards help to explain this means “is” but the children also need to know that the balance between both sides of an equation should have the same value though may have a different appearance.”
To find out more about Beat Dyscalculia or to book training for your school, please contact us.