How to Prepare to Transition from Year 6 to Secondary School

Every year, Year 6 students transition into Year 7, at which point they get their first taste of secondary school life. Although this is a regular occurrence, it never gets easier for the students. Every student will respond differently. Some might be charged about the new experience, while others might be more cautious and guarded.

Whether the student is days away from the transition or has a year, it’s always good to prepare them for this new experience. Here are a few ways to prepare them for the new secondary school life.

Have a heart to heart talk

The first step to getting ready for Year 7 is talking with the child about what to expect. Children can be anxious about the transition and often have various opinions about secondary school.

While they might have an idea of what this new experience is like, they don’t know what to believe in terms of teachers, lessons, school terms and other students. That makes talking to them about how different this new chapter of their life will be from their previous extremely important to make them feel comfortable with the transition.

Encourage them to attend Year 6 transition days

It’s not just parents concerned about the transition into Year 7. Schools are just as concerned. Some even offer transition days to Year 6 students. These days are spent at the secondary school they’ll be going to. They get to see the building, meet some students and teachers, and get first-hand secondary school experience.

The experience allows students to visualise the experience and transition and eases the tension and nervousness of joining secondary school. By the time they make the transition, they already have a clear picture of what to expect.

Start encouraging independent learning

Secondary school takes learning a notch higher. The experience includes more independent learning, and the students might get more freedom and independence in how they complete tasks. The students will also need to remember to hand in their homework and bring any items required for specific lessons or activities like cooking ingredients or PE kits.

In secondary school, the timetables mean the students will need to find their way to the next class on time.

It’s a big jump that comes almost suddenly. You can help your child prepare for it by encouraging them to take on more responsibilities and independence in the classroom and at home. The child also needs to learn that increased independence comes with a greater sense of responsibility.

Help the child work on their organisational skills

Students don’t have to worry about preparing for lessons or getting anything ready in primary school. Teachers take care of everything. But secondary school is different.

Unlike in primary school, students have to ensure they have a fully equipped pencil case and have the necessary books for different subjects. There’s also more homework to worry about and ensure they complete on time.

Organisational skills are crucial at this level. It’s vital to start developing these skills before Year 7 to make the child’s life more bearable when they get to secondary school.

Assigning simple tasks like setting up a study space where they can do their homework, preparing their own lunch, clothes and school bag for the next are also important ways of teaching them how to organise their time.

Instil confidence in them

Many of the things the student will experience and do in Year 7 are new to them. More often than not, the student is anxious and unsure of almost everything they’re doing. Not every student will be worry-free, so you should find time to talk things through and let them know that you have confidence in them.

Also, let the child know that you’re with them through every step, and they can reach out if they need support. This could help reduce anxiety in the child and give them confidence in making decisions and completing tasks independently.

Be patient

Like everything else with your child, this transition is not overnight. It’s lengthy and requires time and patience. At around the same time, your child is quickly approaching their teen years which is another tumultuous and emotional time. You need to be at your most understanding, unruffled and handling everything strategically.

Once you’ve done all you can for your child, you need some preparation to prepare for the transition. Be ready to take a deep breath and let go. Start building a new social network and building a bond with the new school and its personnel.

7 Best Maths Apps Kids

Maths apps are a great way to throw in a few extra fun and interactive practices. Maths apps are a great way to help students understand the concept and also help to introduce major topics in an easy-to-understand way.

The only challenge is that the broad access to maths apps makes it difficult to find the best ones for your child. Here’s a look at some fantastic maths apps worth considering for your child.

  1. Komodo Math

Komodo Math is an app designed by teachers for families. It’s an excellent option for parents looking to build a strong maths foundation for children aged 5-11. What makes Komodo unique is that a teacher sets up the baseline for each user in the app and can personalise the learning plan for your child. The parent defines the reward. The child then engages in little, regular practices to raise their math knowledge and skill.

Komodo focuses on helping students master arithmetic and mental maths. It puts your child in the best position to succeed in maths now and in the future.

  1. Rocket Math

Rocket Math is another learning-oriented math app that proves essential for kids. It takes a fun and easy approach to learning math facts. The app is scientifically engineered for success. It is an online game that offers a fun way to teach math facts to kids in a way they can enjoy, do it quickly and do it well. Because the app is online, children can log in and play on any device anywhere at any time of day.

With the app, students choose up to ten learning tracks ranging from the basic addition and subtractions to the more advanced fact families. The app also provides instant help and corrections. If the student can’t answer a fact in three seconds, the problem and answer are given by mission control.

The app is perfect for kids aged 6-14 years and works perfectly in helping students work on their speed and fluency in answering simple arithmetic.

  1. DoodleMaths

DoodleMaths is an adaptable learning program designed and optimised for mobile and tablets. The app is perfect for kids looking to learn on the go or as support for homework. The app identifies the child’s weak areas in learning and adapts a learning program to the needs of that child.

The app caters to students with all learning needs, even those with special educational needs or language barriers. It has built-in intelligence that identifies the strengths and weaknesses of each child and then builds a work program specific to the child’s needs.

Like Komodo, DoodleMath is also designed by math teachers and helps meet the child’s current ability and knowledge the same way a teacher would. The app is ideal for ages 4-14 years.

  1. Prodigy

Prodigy is considered one of the best free math apps for young students. The app is curriculum-aligned but fantasy-based, making practising essential maths skills fun for kids. The app is adaptive. It assigns activities based on the student’s strengths and weaknesses. Its fabulous reporting system makes it stand out, allowing parents and teachers to keep up with the student’s progress and stay aware of the troublesome skill areas. Prodigy is broad and can cater to students in KS1 and KS2, giving plenty of room for your child to grow.

  1. Numerosity

Numerosity is a maths app designed for children aged 7 – 10 years. The app is specifically designed for iPads. It works by reviewing concepts and improving numeracy skills. It has more than 100 levels and over five chapters of content covering addition, multiplication, subtraction, division and order of operations.

It has an engaging character (Skruff the dog) that guides you throughout while dishing out certificates for each completed chapter.

  1. Native Numbers

Native Numbers is best suited for younger learners in the 4 – 7 years bracket. It is a nice-looking app that can finally get young children to settle down and learn some maths. It plays a crucial role in helping lay down the proper foundation through its 25 engaging activities and an individualised and interactive learning experience with minimal distraction.

  1. Cut the Knot

It can be challenging to find good maths apps for students in specific grades. Most available options tend to focus on young learners because that’s where most of the interest is. The simple maths also makes it easier to design the apps.

Cut the Knot is a maths app for all. It has a plethora of maths-based puzzles and games that cover various topics, including geometry, algebra, arithmetic, and even calculus. It’s the perfect place for students that want to drill down on their maths revision.

What Your Child Learns in Key Stage 2 Maths

Key Stage 2 isn’t very different from Key Stage one. It’s still a formative stage, and the student will continue with the 11 core subjects they started in Key Stage 1: maths, science, English, ICT history, geography, design and technology, art and design, PE, music and RE. IN KS2, the student will also get a chance to learn a foreign language and develop personal and social skills like nutrition and cooking.

Maths will still receive a lot of attention at this level, and your child’s mathematical skills will improve. The stage focuses on improving confidence and accuracy while using the number systems, among other mathematical skills they have learned up to this point. Some of the areas that teachers will focus on during this stage include;

  • Number – Number and place value
  • Number – addition and subtraction
  • Number – multiplication, and division
  • Number – fractions
  • Measurements
  • Geometry – Properties of shapes
  • Geometry – position and direction (from Year 4)
  • Statistics

As pupils get to Year 6, their maths skills have improved dramatically. They have a better understanding of the maths concepts and are more confident working on various problems. That is why the curriculum adds two topics in Year 6, which are;

  • Ratio and proportion
  • Year 6 Algebra

LKS2 Year 3 Maths Curriculum

The first year of Lower Key Stage 2 in Year 3. Pupils will continue to build on their acquired knowledge from KS2. Some of the topics children will learn about in Year 3 include number and place value.

Students will build on their number sense and learn to recognise the place value of each digit in a three-digit number.

By the end of Year 3, students should know how to count from 0 in multiples of 4, 8, 50 and 100. Students can also compare and order numbers up to 1000. It’s a step-up from KS1, where they could only work with numbers up to 100.

Pupils will also learn to find and write fractions, know unit and non-unit fractions, and add and subtract fractions with the same denominator.

Other topics students will learn in KS2 maths include;

  • Measurement (comparing, adding and subtracting different lengths, mass, volume, or capacity)
  • Geometry (drawing 2D shapes, recognising and describing 3D shapes, identifying right angles, horizontal and vertical lines.
  • Statistics

LKS2 Year 4 Maths Curriculum

After Year 3, students will meet even higher standards in Year 4. Most of the topics are the same, but the concepts are more complex.

Number – number and place value

Students in Year 4 will learn to count in multiples of 6, 7, 9, 25 and 1000. They can also order and compare numbers beyond 1000 and round numbers to the nearest 10, 100, or 1000.

Number – Addition and subtraction

Using the columnar addition and subtraction methods, students can add up to 4 digits. In Year 4, the students should also be able to check answers to different calculations by estimating and using inverse operations.

Number – multiplication, and division

Pupils master times tables up to 12×12, and can multiply and divide numbers using place value facts, including dividing numbers by 1, multiplying by 0 and 1, and multiplying t3 numbers.

Students also learn how to use written layout to multiply two-digit and three-digit numbers by one-digit numbers

Other maths topics covered in Year 4 include;

  • Measurement
  • Geometry – properties of shape
  • Geometry – position and direction
  • Statistics

UKS2 Year 5 Maths Curriculum

In the Upper Key Stage, students will notice more challenges as they learn new written methods for completing operations and new maths concepts. Some of the topics students will cover in Year 5 include;

  • Number – number and place value
  • Number – addition and subtraction
  • Number – multiplication, and division
  • Number – fractions
  • Measurement
  • Geometry – properties of shape
  • Geometry – position and direction

In each topic, teachers will incorporate something new. The problems will be harder to solve in most cases, and there will be new concepts.

UKS2 Year 6 Maths Curriculum

Year 5 is the final year of KS2. It’s slightly different and includes two new areas of study. These areas include;

Ratio and proportion

This is a new topic, but I will mainly use the knowledge of fractions and multiples to solve problems that include unequal sharing and grouping.

Students will also solve calculations and percentage problems on this topic. Students will also learn how to come up with a solution to problems that have relative sizes of two quantities and if the missing value can be found using integer multiplication and division facts.

Algebra

Students also get to learn about algebra for the first time. They will learn to express the missing number problems algebraically and describe linear number sequences and how to generate them along with some simple formulae.

Besides these two topics, students will also extend their knowledge in the other maths topics that they have been covering from Year 4.

How to Support a Child with Autism in the Classroom

Most teachers will tell you that working with a child with autism is a handful, especially when you don’t have the experience and skills to handle and support the student. Children with autism can be disruptive in class. They are easily unravelled and require a lot of attention.

Although the challenges of accommodating children with autism in class are well highlighted, their potential and ability are often overlooked. Children with autism can learn to read at an early age, have exceptional visual thinking and learning and can memorise and grasp information quickly.

With the right environment and support in the classroom, it’s possible to nurture these talents and help children with autism become successful students.

  1. Avoid Sensory Overload

Children with autism are easily distracted by fluorescent lights, smells, and noises, making it difficult for them to concentrate.

One of the ways you can support the child in the class is by using cool, calm colours in the class that help create a more relaxing atmosphere suitable for learning. You should also avoid covering the walls with too many posters or other visual aids. Although autistic children learn best visually, having too many items to look at can overwhelm them.

It might even help to have a centre for the student where they can spend time away from all the possible distractions. The less they have around them, the better their attention and chances of learning.

  1. Use visual learning aids

Autistic children learn best through visual aids. Visuals serve as excellent reminders about classroom rules, and where certain things go. They also make excellent learning resources available to the students.

You can also incorporate modelling and pictures, making it easier for the child to understand a concept instead of a lengthy explanation.

  1. Be predictable

Autistic children get easily unsettled. What might seem normal to other students, like having a substitute teacher, might cause autistic students to be anxious.

Being in a predictable environment where the student knows what to expect next is vital for them. The students are less worried or curious about what happens next and can focus better.

Ensure the students have a schedule they can follow. If there are any unpredictable changes, you can use that as a teaching moment to walk the students through how to handle change appropriately.

  1. Treat the students as individuals

You might have several students with autism. Although their educational requirements are similar, each student is still unique, and it’s essential to treat them as such. Treating every student as an individual also models patience, understanding and respect within the classroom and among the exceptional learners.

Some of the accommodations and recommendations you make may be extremely helpful to some learners and not so much for others. You might need to constantly make adjustments to cater to all the students. Also, take time to celebrate their success and always remember that autism can affect individuals differently, which requires learning and adjusting to the needs of the different children.

  1. Manage changes and transitions

Routines are crucial to the comfort of children with autism. No matter how minor, changes and transitions can be overwhelming for them. Unfortunately, changes are often unavoidable and sometimes necessary, especially in school.

You can alleviate the anxiety of change by preparing the students beforehand. If you’re planning to change classrooms in a week, take the child to view the new class a few days in advance. You can also provide the child with pictures of the class for them to look at until the day of the change. Making the process more predictable makes it less daunting for the child and gives them enough time to adjust.

  1. Communicate clearly

Autism can impact the child’s ability to communicate and interpret meaning. Because of this, you need to carefully consider the words you use and how you structure your sentences. Avoid complicated words and long, winding sentences or rhetorical questions. Keep the communication direct and straightforward.

If you need to ask an autistic child to tidy up or pick up something, avoid lengthy sentences like “can you start packing up your pencils and tidy them away into drawers please.” Instead, go for a simpler statement like “Put pencils away.” Pointing to where they need to put the pencils can also help in passing the message.

Final Thoughts

Autistic children can make great students. It takes longer and requires more work, but the process can be rewarding once the student starts responding to your efforts. Although the tips on supporting children with autism in class are simple, it takes patience, resilience, and consistency to implement them.

10 Outdoor Maths Activities

One of the reasons why many students struggle with maths is because of how theoretical it gets. By adding some fun outdoor maths activities, students can warm up to the subject, pay more attention and remain engaged longer.

If you’re thinking of switching things up to get your children to see maths differently and have some fun while at it, here are some great outdoor maths-related activities that you can try out.

  1. Number bounce and shoot

This is an excellent activity to carry out if you’re looking for something you can do right outside your home without spending a penny. You will need a ball, chalk, concrete ground and a target.

You can write maths equations or numbers on the ground using chalk. You can ask the students to answer a maths question or identify a number you call out. The student runs to the number, bounces the ball the number of times represented by the number and then shoots the target. The target can be a big circle drawn on the wall.

  1. The Sandpit

The sandpit at the park is another fun place to learn some math. You can hide fun objects for counter or answers to sums on a worksheet. The students have dig out the right numbers or answers to the equations. When taking to the sandpit, don’t be afraid of a little mess. It’s the perfect place for learning.

  1. Count passing cars

Here’s something simple that kids will love. It’s great for learning and also makes an incredible pass time. Step out to the pavement on the side of a road near the school or your home. Make sure you observe all the safety regulations at all times.

The students can count the cars as they pass. You can make it even more challenging by having them note down the colour of the vehicles as they pass and categorising them. You can then create a maths quiz based on the data collected by the students. Some interesting questions include:

  • What was the colour of the 11th car that passed?
  • If buses are worth two and cars are worth one, how many cars equal five buses?
  1. Shape hunting

You can reinforce recognition of shapes by challenging the class to find items that replication common shapes outdoors.

You can give the student a list of shapes varying in the number of sides and ask them to tick them off as they find them. For advanced learners, you can incorporate 3D shapes and give them a more challenging list.

  1. Giant number line

A giant number can teach a number sense, addition, subtraction, skip-counting, spatial relationship, multiplication and mental maths. Giant number lines are perfect for students in their early academic years.

Number lines are loads of fun and easy to set up. You just need a piece of chalk to create the number line beginning with zero then let them jump, play, explore and count.

  1. Frisbee math

You don’t need to go to the park or have loads of space for this. Just an old frisbee and a permanent marker. Write numbers around the edge of the frisbee, then throw the frisbee to your partner. Encourage them to catch it with both hands. The catcher needs to find the sum, product, difference or quotient of the numbers each hand is touching. For younger kids, you can make the game simpler.

  1. Number throw

Number throw is another fun game that only needs chalk and a ball. Write numbers on the ground that are answers to simple questions. Ask a math question for example 7 + 5 and have the students throw a ball at the right answer. You can also use a bean bag instead of a ball.

  1. Angle hunt

If you’re introducing the student to angles, you can make a template of the hunt and then go out and about to see if the children can spot the correct angles. For more advanced classes, you can also try to have the students take accurate measurements of angles on the playground.

  1. Playground problem questions

You can get students to see their playground in a different way using this activity. Write some word problems that require the student to explore the outdoors to find the answers to every question. These questions can include, how many legs does a picnic table have?

  1. Use nature

There’s plenty that nature has to offer to help with learning maths. Grass, sticks, and flowers are great tools to practice measurement. The pupils can measure the height and length of different items and record them. You can also set out challenges like finding the longest stick.

Students don’t always have to be couped in a class when learning maths. You can break the monotony once in a while and let them explore maths in the great outdoors using these activities.

Maths Challenges in KS2

Students require adequate and regular practice in maths from a young age. It helps them build a culture and a solid foundation to carry into their advanced years. But getting children to concentrate when revising and practising maths can be challenging. This is where maths challenges come in. They are a fun and effective way of working through maths problems without making the child feel overwhelmed.

Here are some fantastic maths challenges for KS2 students that you can try out to get your child involved and fall in love with math.

Make 6p

Children love money. Whether earning or playing with it, money is always great motivation, and this maths challenge is all about money. In this challenge, you try to get the student to develop different ways to make 6p.

Start by drawing out a table with one row. The students can make 6p using three 2ps or six 1ps or other variations. This challenge helps the students recognise the value of money and, at the same time, work on their additions.

https://youtu.be/jOWdtBfTK4s

Three Numbers

Three numbers is a unique maths challenge that could go numerous different ways. The challenge emphasizes summation and helps students work on their basic division skills and logical thinking.

Depending on the student’s level, you can simplify the challenge or increase the difficulty to suit them.

Draw out three boxes and have a number say 24, that all the boxes should add up to. It’s now up to the student to decide what number each box should have to add up to 24. You can add other variations, like each box should have more than five items.

For this challenge, you can use everyday household items or even toys and have the student distribute them among the three boxes.

Spot the difference

Students who have problems with differences or subtractions can benefit from the Spot the Difference maths challenge. This challenge helps students work on their deduction skills. Like the other maths challenges before it, this one is also highly adaptable, and you can adjust it to suit the student’s needs.

You can use this challenge to help students understand single-digit deductions and build on it towards working on more complicated double and triple-digit problems. One of the benefits of this challenge is how you can play around with colour and creativity to keep the student engaged longer.

https://youtu.be/s-RuJHcPQ_s?t=210

Three consecutive numbers

Three consecutive numbers is a simple challenge that works on number recognition and can also help with addition. You can lay out different sets of three numbers in different orders and ask the student to identify those that appear in consecutive order.

You can switch up the difficulty by throwing in a few options with more than three numbers to see how the students adapt. You can decide to do this challenge on paper or use numbered blocks to make it more interactive and engaging for the student.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S-Z0pAJKLCM

Sudoku

Sudoku is a famous maths game. It presents the perfect challenge for your children and you can vary it. The student has to run various additional and subtraction challenges with sudoku to determine the missing numbers. You can start with the simplest 4×4 sudoku worksheets for younger students and then work your way to the more complex 6×6 tables.

The beauty of sudoku is that there are numerous sudoku apps online. You can download them and let the student have a crack at the game whenever they are free. It is one of the more engaging maths challenges that the student can easily pick up on.

Math problem cards

The goal behind maths problem cards is to present students with easy maths problems and see how fast they can work them out. The problems can vary depending on the level of the student and their understanding. Maths problems cards also make an excellent teaching resource because of the creativity of the cards, colour and how the problems are presented. You can choose the cards depending on the problems you want to focus on or go for mixed cards, which will have many problems set out. You have to pick at random and let the students work through what is presented to them.

Closing Remarks

Maths challenges are a great way to get students to put in extra maths work and see how well they can play around with numbers. With maths challenges for KS2, you can take the learning out of class to just about anywhere, making the sessions more interactive and beneficial to the student.

What Your Child Learns in Key Stage 3 Maths

After the Year 6 SATs, your child will be entering the Key Stage 3 level for the next three years, starting with Year 7. At this point, most parents will start feeling like their children are overtaking them in maths knowledge. That’s because they are.

The curriculum in KS3 is more diverse and comprehensive, and the difficulty goes up a level. In KS3, maths is taught in ability sets. Children use mental and written methods, and at this level, they can also use calculators and ICT as spreadsheets.

The focus is on enhancing mathematical fluency, mathematical reasoning, and problem-solving at this level. The different maths topics that children will learn in KS3 include.

Numbers

During the KS3 stage, students will go through various sub-topics in numbers. These will include;

  • Place values
  • Decimals, positive and negative integers and fractions
  • Prime numbers, multiples and factors
  • Adding, subtracting, multiplying and dividing
  • Using conventional notation for the priority of operations
  • Powers and roots
  • Terminating decimals and their corresponding fractions
  • Percentages
  • Units of mass, time, length, money
  • Rounding up/down
  • Approximation and estimation
  • Using calculators and technology to solve problems

This broad topic serves as the basis of most of the other things students will learn in maths over the next three years.

Algebra

In KS3, algebra will pop up a lot more often, and it will also get more challenging in the concepts and the diversity of the content that students will learn. Topics covered in algebra at this stage will include;

  • Using and interpreting algebraic notations
  • Substituting numerical values into formulae
  • Expressions, equations, inequalities, terms and factors
  • Linear equation
  • Understanding and using standard mathematical formulae
  • Simplifying algebraic expressions
  • Learning coordinates in all four quadrants
  • Approximate solutions to conceptual problems
  • Generating graphs from linear and quadratic equations
  • Linear equations
  • Arithmetic and geometric sequences

Ration Proportion and rates of change

  • Changing between standard units
  • Scale factors, scale diagrams and maps
  • Ratio notation
  • Expressing quantities as ratios or fractions
  • Solving percentage change problems
  • Direct and inverse proportion
  • Compound units such as speed, density and unit pricing

Geometry and Measures

A lot of what students will study in this sub-topic will include shapes, spaces and measuring. Topics covered will include;

  • Angles
  • Problems involving perimeter, volume and area
  • Interpreting scale drawings
  • Congruent triangles
  • Using a ruler and compass
  • Faces, surfaces and edges
  • Pythagoras’ theorem
  • Translations, reflections and rotations
  • Drawing and labelling using conventional terms and notations
  • asymmetry and transformation

Probability

Probability will be a new concept for students but not any less important. It will cover a variety of vital topics, including;

  • How to record, describe and analyse data from probability experiments
  • Venn diagrams, tables and grids
  • Theoretical sample spaces for single and combined events

Statistics

In statistics, students are going to learn how to collect, record and represent various types of data. They will also learn new ways of manipulating the data depending on the problem. Some of the topics covered include;

  • Calculating mean, mode, range and median
  • Constructing and interpreting frequency tables, pie charts, bar charts, pictograms, vertical line charts, and pictograms
  • Describing mathematical relationships between two variables

Functional Maths 

In KS3, the focus is not only on learning new mathematical concepts or skills but also on how students can transfer those math skills to solve everyday situations in the working world. Subjects like statistics will play a geometry will play a critical role in students who pursue careers in architecture or related fields. The same is the case for students that pursue other careers.

Maths and Other Subjects

During KS3, expect to see maths pop up in some subjects. Following up as closely as possible with maths will go a long way in helping with these other subjects. Some of the subjects you can expect a lot of maths involvement include physics, chemistry, biology, geography, business studies and ICT.

Key Stage 3 Maths Exams

As you would expect, KS3 also has its fair share of tests and exams. However, the student is now well beyond the formative years. Therefore, most of the exams are up to the individual school to decide on. These could be tests, coursework, or a more formal exam paper. However, this is something that the school decides, not a national exam board.

This means the exams will have less pressure because the exams are less formal. These tests are vital for teachers, pupils, and parents to monitor how the pupil is doing academically. The tests and exams show the student’s understanding of the subject and help identify any problem areas for the students to start preparing for GCSE.

 

10 SATs Revision Tips

It’s a parent’s dream to have their child excel in their SATs. While the child might have a stellar record in school doing well in exams, you can’t help but worry about their preparation and how they will do in their SATs. As the exams get closer, preparation and revision become the main focus. But in many cases, you might not have an idea of how to help your child revise for SATs effectively.

If you’re a parent or a student working towards your first SATs in need of a few tips on how you can make the most out of your SATs revision and have it reflected in your results, here are a few tips that can help you achieve that.

  1. Focus on the gaps

Every child has weaknesses that can compromise their performance. If you’re not sure of the areas your child has challenges in, you can talk to their teacher. The teacher can also give you a brief overview of what Year 6 SATs revision your child should focus on.

Make a list of the areas that the teacher highlights and develop a plan on how you will work with the child to improve these areas. This is also an excellent time to inspire the child and make them feel confident enough to know that they can work through these areas and excel.

  1. Schedule a time

More often than not, you will have several areas to work on with the child, not to forget that you shouldn’t leave out the areas they are good in. The next step is to schedule a time for revision. The revision time depends on whether the parent is actively involved. The amount of time you dedicate to revision determines how much revision you can get done. But at the same time, you don’t want to overload the child, which can be counterproductive.

  1. Revise to Music

This is not a conventional tip, but some students respond positively to revising with music. It increases their attention span and concentration and takes the boredom out of revision. The choice of music, in this case, is critical. Classical music and study music readily available online are great options to try.

  1. Get a tutor

If you’re keen on getting the student some professional help aside from their teacher, consider getting a tutor. Most tutors are immensely experienced and have worked with dozens of students, helping them prepare for their SATs. The tutor will quickly identify weak areas, help the student develop the schedule and ensure they follow it. If there are any challenges, the tutor is well equipped to help the student work through the problems.

  1. Little and often

As the exams inch closer, the days feel as they go by faster. There’s pressure to take on as much as possible. However, a child’s attention is limited, and pushing the child beyond those limits isn’t worth it. Focus on short and sharp bursts of revision for better digestion and retention.

  1. Revision cards and poster

Revision cards and posters are a great way of keeping the child focused, mainly on areas they’re struggling with. Write down keywords on cue cards to help the child jog their memory, and they can also use the same cards to revise in their own time when they want to.

  1. Don’t forget mental maths

Students don’t get to use calculators in SATs. So, you have to make sure your child has excellent mental maths skills. One of the things you have to work on is their times tables. The information from the times tables is critical in various questions for the maths papers.

  1. Keep track

One of the best rewards for a child is knowing they are making progress. Have them mark their won practice papers, times table and spelling tests, and record the results. This gives motivation and confidence to the student to continue putting in the work because it’s paying off.

  1. Practice working under pressure

SATs have strict time limits, which sometimes students struggle to keep up with and hand in incomplete papers. It’s vital that your child gets used to working at speed and learning how to pace themselves. If they know how to work against the clock, they have better chances of completing each question within the allocated time.

  1. Have some downtime

Don’t let revising for SATs take over the child’s life. It can be overwhelming and demotivating. Encourage the child to continue with sports, clubs and other hobbies they enjoy. Having some time away from schoolwork can reduce the pressure and keep them engaged in the revision process.

10 Tips on How to Revise for GCSE Effectively

Every student looks forward to their GCSE exams. It’s a significant milestone in their lives and could determine their future trajectory. But with all the pressure and schoolwork, it can be challenging to keep up with revision which is a critical part of doing well in your GCSEs.

For students that already have a revision schedule in place, it’s essential to note that you should focus on effective GCSE revision. It’s not about the amount of time you spend revising. It’s how you make use of that time. Here are a few tips to help you get the most out of your revision time.

  1. Print out a copy of the exam schedule

The biggest mistake students make is thinking they have a lot of time before the exam. Having the exam schedule can help you have a visual reminder that the exams are inching closer. The schedule will also help you create a guide depending on when and where each exam will take place.

  1. Create a revision timetable

A revision timetable adds structure to your revision and helps you stay on top of all your GCSE subjects. A practical and well-developed timetable will allocate enough time to revise all the subjects and ensure you organise your study time.

A revision timetable is also an excellent motivator for revising for the exams. Create the schedule online to access it wherever you are and have a printed copy up in your study area for reference and to help you stay focused.

  1. Plan realistically

One of the leading reasons students don’t keep up with their revision timetables is being too ambitious too early. It’s critical that you plan realistically. Allow for regular breaks and rewards at reasonable milestones.

Having bite-sized milestones will allow you to enjoy the efforts of your revision and help you stay motivated for the final exams.

If you feel stressed or tired, it’s vital to take a break. Breaks will improve your memory retention and keep your brain engaged longer.

  1. Understand your learning style

Every student has a unique way of learning. Some students are visual learners. Others are auditory, reading, writing, or kinaesthetic learners. Knowing how you learn best will increase information retention and make it easier to remember new information. Over time, you will also know if you study better at night, during the day, or morning. Schedule your revision times to when you have the highest concentration to make the most out of every study session.

  1. Timing sessions

The ideal length of individual revision sessions varies depending on the student. Generally, two hours is reasonable per session on a particular subject. But if the student struggles with the 2-hour sessions, you can break them up with breaks in between, making them just as effective.

  1. Have an effective study space

Set up an isolated workspace where you can study in peace and without any distractions. The perfect study space should be quiet and away from the bedroom.

Having a dedicated study space can improve concentration, reduce distractions, and make revision time more effective.

  1. Create boundaries

Students need to have distraction-free study times. Although a certain level of supervision is required, it’s important to the student that there are no constant questions while they study.

  1. Move regularly

Although it’s essential to sit still and concentrate, you shouldn’t stay stagnant for a long time. Exercise is essential to children. You need enough movement and fresh air each day to help your concentration levels. Try exercising earlier in the day or go for a short walk between revisions.

  1. Start early

The earlier you start, the more you can revise. Starting earlier also prevents information overload and gives you time to thoroughly go over your material, giving yourself better chances of success.

If you wait until it’s too late, trying to fit everything within the limited time becomes an impossible task.

  1. Get enough rest

You need enough sleep and rest every night. Rest is vital in promoting the functioning of the brain. Enough rest helps rejuvenate the mind and avoids fatigue. This way, every day, you wake up feeling fresh and ready to learn.

Closing Remarks

Although these tips are critical in effective revision, they can only work if you stick to the schedule and are consistent in your revision. If you have a tight schedule and can’t supervise your child to ensure they stick to the schedule, you can consider hiring a tutor to help them keep up with the revision.

10 Teaching Math Online Tips

Online tutoring is quite popular now. It’s emerged as a critical yet convenient tool for students seeking extra support and guidance to achieve their academic goals. Maths tutors have the highest demand, largely because of the nature of the subject and the attention and practice it requires.

Online maths tutoring allows students to connect with tutors conveniently and with minimal disruption of their routine. However, it’s not without its challenges. Tutors have to put in extra work and use a few tips to make the online maths tutoring sessions as productive and engaging as possible. Here are a few online maths teaching tips you can use to deliver the best results.

  1. Build your knowledge base

The first step to being an excellent online maths tutor is having enough knowledge of the relevant topics. The level of knowledge varies with the grade or skill level you tutor. You should have a firm grasp of mathematical concepts enough to instil confidence in the students you tutor and address the student’s immediate problems.

  1. Develop a knack for assessing your student’s needs

A good maths tutor starts by understanding the needs of the student they are working with to personalise the tutoring accordingly. As you interact with the student, you should pick up on insightful things like their strengths and shortcomings. Such insights provide maximum benefit to the student by tailoring your tutoring to their strengths.

  1. High level of professionalism

The lack of physical connection can degrade professionality. As a professional, you should always ensure you look, speak and communicate like a professional. Always ensure you start your online sessions on time. You should also provide the students with pre-class readings and send them the session recording and assignment based on what you covered in the session.

  1. Patience

As with any other form of teaching, it takes patience and consistency for students to understand maths concepts. Most students looking for tutoring are having a rough time with maths. Knowing that their tutor is patient enough is a good thing, and it can help them slow things down and take in the lesson.

Showing patience and calmness when explaining concepts makes them easier to understand. It makes it easier for the student to ask questions and seek clarifications on any doubts they have, no matter how silly they seem.

  1. Positivity and encouragement

It’s common for students to struggle, particularly with maths. When they struggle to figure out a certain concept or maths problem, it’s your job as a tutor to encourage them, make them feel positive, and boost their confidence to help them solve the problems at hand.

  1. Persistence

One of the greatest qualities of a good online maths tutor is persistence. It’s an important quality that differentiates good maths tutors from great ones.

When the student makes the same mistake repeatedly or can’t grasp a concept, you should have the persistence to encourage them to realise the mistake. Sometimes, you might also have to teach a concept multiple times for the student to understand.

  1. Have good resources at hand

One of the benefits of being an online tutor is that you only need to use a resource once. After that, it is stored in your library. It makes it easier to access the resource for subsequent sessions or students. Some of the common resources tutors should have include figures, diagrams, and exam papers.

  1. Leverage technology

When tutoring, you don’t have the benefit of using a pen and paper, but technology takes care of that. You can use a good drawing tablet or touch screen device with a stylus. These serve the same purpose as a pen and paper and make it easier to draw, sketch and draw figures. That makes tutoring a lot easier and more effective.

  1. Keep the sessions short and digestible

Fitting as much as possible into every session seems like an easy way to give the student the most value. But that doesn’t always yield the best results. Consider breaking down the materials into manageable chunks. It’s also advisable to mix up the material to keep things interesting and engaging for the student.

  1. Always focus on the goals

When preparing your material, focus on specific goals for the session. Clearly state those goals to the students. These goals should be the main takeaway after completing each chunk. It also allows you to have guiding questions that directly arrive at those goals. The goals should be tiered so that in each lesson, you’re getting closer to the main goal.