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Yet ANOTHER test for 11 y.o. 'Times tables 'to be tested by age 11'

Discussion in 'Education news' started by chelsea2, Jan 3, 2016.

  1. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    Not moaning about children learning their tables - just adding yet another test to the Y6 pantheon, on such a narrow part of the curriculum - then judging teachers on their pupils' results.

    So how will the performance of other teachers (who may have left) be judged at the end of Y6?
  2. Vince_Ulam

    Vince_Ulam Star commenter

    It's best judged before they leave while ensuring they are doing what is required of them.
  3. Benbamboo

    Benbamboo Occasional commenter

    Do they really think we need a test to know which children now their times tables and those that don't?

    Will it really be able to 'target those areas' where we are clearly failing children? Surely it will only target times tables, unless by 'areas' they mean they will give us valuable assistance in working out Jonny can do his 5s and 10s but not his 6s and 7s, which ultimately means we aren't giving him a 'fair shot'.

    What help will it be recognising these children at the end of primary school? I assume resits in year 7 are soon to be announced to make sure the secondary schools are picking up the slack after these poor children have been failed by the primaries.

    What a nonsensical statement.
  4. sirspamalotless

    sirspamalotless Occasional commenter

    This is ridiculous! Testing is a matter of sticking kids on a computer and doing an auto-marked series of simple maths tests. It's not difficult.

    I'm sick of trying to teach kids who arrive in secondary school, who struggle to write in legible handwriting and aren't able to do the very simplest of maths problems. What the hell are they doing in primary classes for 6 years 6 hours a day since they started school? How difficult can it be in 6 years to teach kids how to multiply a couple of small numbers in their head and how to write simple words in a line and in a sentence so someone else can read it?
  5. Yoda-

    Yoda- Lead commenter

    'Times tables 'to be tested by age 11'

    Excellent. Educational standards ensured by decisive executive action. In their dreams...


  6. Maths_Shed

    Maths_Shed Occasional commenter

    It's not even multiplying, it's getting them to remember about 100 facts. They already know many more and in the overwhelming majority of cases it's simply down to them not being sufficiently bothered to learn them and parents only too happy to leave all responsibility to the school.
  7. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    If you think primary teachers are so useless, why not try it? Bear in mind there are increasing numbers of primary children starting school not even toilet trained, unable to even SPEAK in sentences, let alone read or write in sentences. In some areas many of the children are starting from a very low base of child development which means they need a lot of early learning experiences before they are ready for the formal learning beloved of the government. This learning gap is so hard to close, especially for boys.

    So, yes, there will be children going to secondary school unable to do the things you identify. But can you, hand on heart, say they are the majority? The HUGE MAJORITY of children leave primary school literate & numerate, even if they have been taught to 'write by numbers', to analyse extracts from books but without knowing the enjoyment of reading & thinking about a whole book, and knowing many number facts, even if they have never been exposed to the joy of maths.
    lardylady likes this.
  8. Sundaytrekker

    Sundaytrekker Star commenter

    I agree: if it has to be tested, then the end of year 4 is right. Those who can't manage it then have another go the next year. I have always taught and tested times tables. Almost everyone can learn them but some need longer recall time.

    However, why put more money into another stick to beat us with?
    palmtree100 likes this.
  9. David Getling

    David Getling Lead commenter

    In fact it's a lot less than 100, when one considers that multiplication (of integers) is commutative, and the 1 X table.
    I think this sums it up perfectly. If you can remember that that long red thing is called a carrot, and that round read thing is called a tomato, then remembering that a 5 and a 6 with a X between them is a 30 shouldn't be insurmountable, if one makes the effort.
  10. Flere-Imsaho

    Flere-Imsaho Star commenter

    No. They think they need a test to stop teachers just passing all children. It's nothing to do with "Maths" and everything to do with this government's lack of trust and the desire to control bizarre details of the curriculum.
  11. Twinklefoottoe

    Twinklefoottoe Senior commenter

    I think one way forward would be to introduce far more performance management targets for Primary School teachers and holding them to account for their students' Maths and English skills. What is going on in Primary schools? What has been going on for the last decade? Is there no sense of responsibility in these places? Are they being too modern and letting pupils develop slowly by osmosis? Answers not excuses are needed!

    Primary schools for far too long have been sending pupils to secondary school without the very basics under their belts let alone a mastery. This clearly results in many students not being ready and underperforming in secondary school. I used to despair when I saw the hand-writing of the new year 7 each year. It was always the same; a third with nice writing, a third with writing you could read on a good day and a third an incomprehensible mess. I can remember at school practising, practising, practising writing until it was fantastic, and everyone in the class doing the same. Anyone who didn't master this fundamental skill got more practise and less fun activities until it was acceptable. Parents were under no illusion what was expected of their children and what they had to do to support them. Too many excuses now. Maths was equally as bad, with students immediately asking for calculators every time the simplest of sums had to be done, or being unable to do simple divisions or multiplications because all they had been taught was 'chunking' methods.

    I suspect that many primary school teachers cannot teach English or Maths because they haven't mastered these themselves. A GCSE grade C in these subjects, or not being able to put away their mobile phones for longer than 10 minutes, probably says it all.

    Just too many excuses now. Too many.
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2016
    monicabilongame likes this.
  12. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    How many adults do you know who could explain the niceties of the subjunctive tense? Or the use of commas (or not) with defining and non-defining relative clauses? How many of us, whether teachers or not, can honestly say we would 'master' a times table test up to 12 x 12 against the clock with no mistakes?

    I'll tell you what is going on in Primary schools: some of the expectations of children under the current curriculum, particularly in English and Maths, are quite frankly, ridiculous. Performance management targets for teachers are already unrealistic: increasing teachers' accountability for some children's inability or lack of inclination to reach standards of attainment that have been ill-conceived and badly thought through, risks driving even more good, experienced teachers out of the profession.

    Of course, in an ideal world, all children should leave Primary school with the basics under their belts, but children are unique and complex human beings, each with their own wants, needs, skills, talents, problems and issues; they develop at different rates and if we expect them all to achieve the same things at the same time we are going to be disappointed. Why can't we accept that each child is different?

    For many Primary teachers now there is a feeling that no matter what we do - no matter how many hours we put in, no matter how many targets we reach, no matter how many ways we differentiate our lessons to cater for each individual child, no matter how exciting or stimulating our lessons and no matter how many rounded, knowledgeable and emotionally literate children leave our classrooms at the end of the year - it will never be good enough.
  13. Twinklefoottoe

    Twinklefoottoe Senior commenter

    More excuses.

    I was never asking for primary schools to send me students who could conjugate verbs, convert sentences into past perfect continuous or prove algebraic equations. I only wanted 95% of students starting year 7 to be able to:

    - write in proper sentences
    - begin sentences with a capital letter
    - end sentences with a full stop
    - write in paragraphs
    - write neatly in a horizontal line on lined paper
    - be able to read to a level that allows them to access Yr 7 standard teaching books and resources
    - be apply to work out in a second that three times seven is twenty one rather than spending a minute finding their calculator in their bag, switching it on, entering in the numbers correctly and a minute later, coming up with an answer.​

    Regardless of much of whatever else is taught, if the majority of students could do the above when they arrived at secondary school, they might actually be able to access the subjects that they have to learn. As it is, the lack of the very, very basics means that many students arrive, and then are immediately put off school and behaviour becomes a problem. This is as you would expect - the poor sods can't read, write or do basic sums properly!

    I'll ask again - why is the above so difficult, when primary schools have these students for six years, six hours a day?
    monicabilongame likes this.
  14. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    Tell the Government that - because that is what we have to teach.

    I have taught primary for 35 years, largely in Y6 in a challenging school with many families living dysfunctionally. Even most of these pupils, with such a background, can do these things. I simply do not believe that the majority of Y7 pupils across the country cannot. SATS results (despite their limitations) would certainly indicate otherwise. Even children achieving only the old Level 3 would be competent at your list of 'basics'. So - your evidence to the contrary....

    Anyway, this began as a thread commenting on yet another test for our Y6 pupils, and that their teachers would be judged on their results. Thanks for continuing the primary teacher bashing.
    sally90 and Lalad like this.
  15. tt198

    tt198 New commenter

    What amongst the primary expectations do you see as ridiculous?
  16. Lalad

    Lalad Star commenter

    It is ridiculous to expect all eleven-year-olds to have a higher level of grammatical understanding than most adults.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  17. Maths_Shed

    Maths_Shed Occasional commenter

    That acceptance only seems to result in pupils arriving in year 7 with an attitude that it is OK for them not to know their times tables and not to be able to write because they are still developing. It is not good enough for them to not know their times tables because they will be unable to access some of the KS3 and KS4 work. If you know your name is Emily and you live at number 15 then you have the capability to know that 6 x 8 = 48. You just need to be sufficiently bothered/directed/encouraged to do it and it should be done before a pupil starts secondary school.

    And while I'm on with it they need to stop being taught daft methods that they will only be told not to use once they get to secondary.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  18. chelsea2

    chelsea2 Star commenter

    Once again, primary teachers are being blamed for something which the government dictates.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  19. guinnesspuss

    guinnesspuss Star commenter

    And while you're moaning about it, tell those who direct the Primary teacher to teach such stuff, with the threat of 'sanctions' such as capability if they demur, what rubbish it is.
    monicabilongame likes this.
  20. tt198

    tt198 New commenter

    The historic failure of the education system is no reason to not rectify the situation now.

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