You may have heard announcements about the Multiplication Tables Check coming in for year 4 children.
Here’s what you need to know:
- Maths is a big subject and we appreciate there’s more to it than times tables and there’s more to times tables than learning them off by heart. However, a lot of the rich, interesting maths is all about the multiplicative relationships and these are hard to fully grasp without fluent recall of the tables. For that reason, learning the tables is fundamental – they are a key facilitator to the maths that sits on top.
- The checks will not be compulsory until 2020 so current year 3s will be the first cohort to do them when they’re in year 4.
- They will be done at some point during the year, most likely within a three week-long window towards the end of the year.
- The results of the test are not published publicly, they’re not going to end up on a league table and they’re not to worry about. There’s no pass or fail, there’s just a score out of 25 marks (or 20). They’re not to be used to compare children, they’re for us to reflect on so that we make the most of our provision. We’re actually looking forward to seeing how well we do.
- The checks consist of 25 questions (possibly only 20, depending on government trials later this year). The questions will only be multiplication and they will go up to 12×12. There’s nothing novel about the questions and they don’t require problem solving so there’s nothing to trip them up.
- The checks are all about remembering the multiplication facts. That doesn’t mean we’ll forget all about the concepts, patterns, structures and relationships in multiplication. We’re going to be learning those too, partly because they go hand in hand with excellent recall.
- The questions are relatively simple, age appropriate and the length of the check is under 5 minutes.
- Please be supportive of our approach in parent-parent communication channels. It’s important that we get behind the checks for the benefit of all our children.
- The check is carried out online.