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Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Mathletics and Reading Eggs

I introduced Mathletics, as part of my role of co ordinator of maths, several years ago. Since it's introduction it has been an important part of our maths tool-kit in helping to raise maths results from years 2 to 6. Our KS2 maths scores in 2012 placed us in the top 40% of all schools with 97% of our pupils achieving expected progress in 2012 when the national level was 87%. Now obviously this is not all down to Mathletics but there is a definite correlation between use of Mathletics and individual pupil progress. In simple terms, those pupils, of all abilities, have a higher rate of progress if they use Mathletics regularly compared to those that use it less often.

My year 2 class have only been introduced to Mathletics this year and these are some of their comments about it:

'It is tricky but it does help you get better at maths'

'It's brilliant, it really helps me with my maths'

'It's good'

'It really helps me with my learning'

'It is a bit hard but I know I'm getting better at maths'

As a teacher, what I like the best about Mathletics is how easy it is to differentiate my pupils learning, set tasks for both school and as homework and to keep track of the children's progress.This information can then be fed back to parents during Parents Evenings or a general reminder given to use Mathletics more regularly via the termly newsletter.

As co ordinator of maths I also regularly check individual pupils use of Mathletics across a two week period. The three pupils who have accessed Mathletics the most have their name placed on the leader board in school. The first place winner receives a trophy to keep for two weeks and the second and third place pupils receive a certificate each. These are awarded during our weekly celebration assembly and are very popular which helps keep the pupils interested and using Mathletics regularly.

Reading and Reading Eggspress are a newer addition to our Reading tool-kit having been introduced to the school at a later date. The main difference with Reading Eggs is that as you can see from the picture above it can be used by children from the age of  3, in our school it is used from F2 through to year 6. Our reading scores at the end of KS2 are in the top 20% of all schools in KS2 and KS1. Reading eggs is KS1 can be quite competitive as the pupils strive to finish all 12 maps which then results in them moving onto Reading Eggspress. Here is what some of the children in year 2 think about Reading Eggs and Eggspress:

'Reading Eggs helps me with my reading. It's amazing'

'I like the activities'

'I think Reading Eggspress better than Reading Eggs because it has more things to do, because you can choose what games you play'

'I like Reading Eggs but I wish I was on Reading Eggspress'

As a teacher I find Reading Eggs and Eggspress a bit more difficult to navigate. It is self differentiating but does not give me the facility to set activities or check their usage however which means that although you can suggest they use it for homework whether they have done it is difficult to check.

Like Mathletics a trophy and certificates are awarded to encourage use at home but in Reading Eggs this has to be based upon them writing stories rather than reading which isn't as useful.

I would though without hesitation recommend both Mathletics and Reading Eggs/Eggspress so if you haven't already why not give it a whirl!