Bedwas Infants School – Supporting the development of a Numeracy Toolkit

School Profile

Bedwas Infants is a small, English medium community Infants school in the village of Bedwas, Caerphilly and caters for children between the ages of 3 and 7. There is a Nursery class offering part time provision and 4 other Foundation Phase classes, two of which have mixed year groups. Bedwas Infants was the subject of an Estyn case study of best practice following their inspection in 2014.

  • 115 full time pupils on roll with an additional 46 part time in the nursery
  • School categorisation : Yellow
  • 16%FSM
  • 25% ALN

What were we asked to support?

Bedwas Infants asked us to continue to support their staff following our numerical reasoning workshop that was delivered to all schools in their cluster. They wanted to develop their strategies to embed numerical reasoning skills across the

curriculum, from Nursery through to Year 2 but they knew they needed a more consistent approach to enable their pupils to become more independent learners.

What did we do?

We used their national numeracy test data to identify and explore the common misconceptions that their pupils had, in order to create ways that these could be addressed right from Nursery and Reception through to Years 1 and 2. We brought lots of resources with us for the school to gain some inspiration and create activities that would engage and motivate their children but make sure all pupils were experiencing similar concepts throughout the key stage to build their confidence and consolidate their learning. The staff really wanted a toolkit that gave pupils their own bank of strategies. So, we looked at examples of various problem solving toolkits, we analysed their strengths and weaknesses and then as a whole school Bedwas staff developed their own bespoke toolkit for their pupils. Being such a creative and innovative staff, the toolkit had to be engaging for pupils across the Foundation Phase, so the Super Solvers arrived, complete with superhero costumes and a handy utility belt containing all of the mathematical and reasoning strategies and tools that would be needed. Staff even decided to dress up in as the Super Solvers to launch the toolkit with the pupils!

Expected Impact

  • Pupils can now develop greater resilience in approaching problems and reasoning opportunities within the curriculum more independently. The strategies that they are being introduced to from Nursery, can be taken and developed as they grow through the school.
  • Greater resilience and confidence with pupils will impact on greater progress in the national Numerical Reasoning tests and as they move up to KS2.

Next steps for the school

After the launch visit in assembly from the Super Solvers, time is needed for pupils to be taught how to use the toolkit which will be reviewed and evaluated later during the Autumn Term. We will be returning to discuss with the staff ways to further develop Numerical Reasoning throughout the school.