# New KS1 Maths tests - had you noticed...

Discussion in 'Primary' started by michaelt1979, Sep 4, 2015.

1. ### michaelt1979Occasional commenter

... that children will no longer be able to use any apparatus in the tests.

Here's the explanation from the sample tests instructions:

2. ### MszEstablished commenter

Yes I think that's going to be the biggest challenge for six and seven year olds

and there are grids to support the use of formal methods of calculations!

4. ### Lara mfl 05Star commenter

Eek! If they're not allowed them in KS1 how are the weaker ones at KS2 going to manage?

However perhaps the 'grid' will help? Assuming that's the 'grid multiplication'.

We had children who in KS1 did ok in tests because they could use apparatus but did not show the expected progress in KS2 because they could not use apparatus. Within class when using apparatus they could succeed, they needed this to help them achieve. So in one way it would be helpful if they didn't use apparatus in KS1 because of the expectations it creates. I think all children should be allowed to use apparatus in tests in primary.

Agree with wotton though, the TEST results between year 2 and year 3 can be dire as the children move from " use any equipment you like, have all the time you like and do the test in small groups" to " here's the paper, you have 40 minutes, get on with it!" If combined with teacher assessment, the results are not so stark but in some schools it is still the test results that predominate!

7. ### MszEstablished commenter

But surely moving from concrete apparatus to number squares to abstract is a progression

8. ### Purple_Daisy

Agree! Children need to understand the method and reasoning first in order to apply , moving them to written methods before they are ready with lead to all sorts of problems later down the line

Yes but if a child has not yet made the leap from concrete/symbolic representation and has, in a KS2 test, to work in the abstract they would not be able to access as much of the content as they would if they were to use concrete materials. So results can be skewed for some children who are artificially pushed into abstract representations before they are ready for them because of the demands of the test situation.

10. ### MszEstablished commenter

there are 6 years to move from the concrete to abstract isn't it rushing things to squeeze it into just two?

Yes, but that is what is being asked of them.

I agree, children should be able to use the equipment they need at the stage they are at but the testing arrangements don't allow that,

12. ### MszEstablished commenter

It's one of the first things we noticed ...

13. ### michaelt1979Occasional commenter

No - the 1cm square grids are for column addition/subtraction in KS1 (on very few questions) and 7mm square grids on all questions in KS2 - including those implying long multiplication.

14. ### BylroNew commenter

Grid multiplication is now being dropped. No method marks awarded for it 2016 onwards if the solution is wrong.