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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:18 pm 
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My son has just told me he was given a hard maths tests today along with all the year 5 children ( his year ) and the year 6 children. It was scored out of 31 and he told me his mark was 19 which according to the teacher was only a level 2 . :shock: I was told recently he had really improved his maths which he was a 3a at the end of year 4 , so I'm a bit worried about this and can't really understand it. Some of the children were apparently told they were level 1 ???? Can this be right ? Surely a level 2 mark would mean DS would only know number bonds to 10 and the equivalent ....would this be a sats test ? It was for all abilities.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:47 pm 
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It was most likely a CAT - cognitive ability test, which all year 5 do at this point. It includes number sequence puzzles, algebraic logic, working out common properties of abstract shapes in a sequence and choosing which goes with them, looking at drawings of folded paper and working out how they will look when opened if certain holes are punched into them. In fact similar problem solving to the 11+ but using different types of question. The levels referred to are not the same as their national curriculum levels, its a different scale but I'm afraid I can't remember the details (sorry half term so can't check with my Year 5 teacher). Lots of pupils find it strange because they don't encounter these kind of questions elsewhere.

If these puzzles don't sound familiar to your DS, it may have been a "Single level test" which some schools have copies of, but not many. These were devised as a possible alternative to SATS a in 2009. Some schools were part of the testing of their suitability. They were not taken up as replacement for SATS, but can be useful for testing what level your pupils are at. You choose which test to give each child dependant on the level you think they should be at.
If it was one of these, do not worry about your DS's score. I just used one of these with my class and many of them did far worse than I expected in a most baffling way. I talked it through with them and we went over the areas they had misunderstood. That is what it is for.

I think it is far most likely to be the CAT though, ask his teacher about the levels.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:22 pm 
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Thanks for replying, Aargh . I'm not sure if they were cat tests..Ds seemed to think it was the usual maths topics but difficult to understand what was being asked of you although he said he understood once the teacher went over them.Perhaps he was just having a funny five minutes and it does sound as if the whole class struggled too. I'm just concerned with the level 2 as he is scoring 70 odd percent in the bond 11 plus 9-10 books so I'm sure isn't behind as that would suggest !


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:29 pm 
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If it was the usual maths subjects it may be a single level test.
Some schools might give them a past SAT paper, but that is a bit mean this early in the year, before they have covered all the topics. Would explain poor performance though. But 19 out of 31 is 62% not at all bad for a year 5 if it was a SAT past paper with topics he won't have yet been taught.
Or it may have just be devised by the school.

Sometimes even able pupils can't work out the method required for working out the answer in tests.
After their surprising results, I have been doing extra work with my class in how to interpret questions correctly.

I don't know if you can get hold of it, but I use a book called "pitch and expectations" (there are different volumes for each year group) which is full of the type of maths they will encounter in tests. You might be able to work through the logical methods with him.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:35 pm 
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http://www.school-portal.co.uk/GroupRen ... ID=2017061

Pitch and expectations are from the National Strategies - the site is archived which makes it hard to search. Google produced the above link ...

http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov. ... /nav:49914

Here's the original stuff ..


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:37 pm 
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Yes, it's the sort of thing schools are given but difficult for parents. Maybe your DCs teacher could copy you some sections to try at home?


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:49 pm 
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I think the 'What I can do in Maths' booklets are better for parents.

Here is the level 3 version: http://nsonline.org.uk/node/237756

Or 'Understanding progression in Maths'

https://www.education.gov.uk/publicatio ... 00267-2010


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:22 pm 
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Thanks you two...I'll have a good read in a mo.Just to say that DS has 2 year 6 boys staying tonight and I couldn't control myself any longer and decided I would have to give them all a grilling , and it would seem it was a year 6 sats paper and so one of the boys said to me " Scarlett..it's really nothing to concern yourself over...only worry if you have a son like me in year 6 ." Such a sweet boy !So, I feel better, and think I shall have to plug on especially with the word problems.Still not sure what all this level 2 etc is about though .


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 8:38 pm 
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Thanks so much , guest55...the pitch and expectations in particular is really useful and I shall be looking at it with DS over half term...lucky boy ! The questions do look quite tricky to understand which was the problem.


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:09 pm 
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Glad to help scarlett.
Like I said, bit mean to give them a past SAT this soon. Seems a bit like setting them up to fail.

Best thing is to ask him the questions, then ask him what calculations he thinks he will need to solve it. Say, don't worry about the answer straight away, get him to think of the logic behind how to work it out.
Also remind him to show his working out calculations because you get extra marks for your working out in some questions. Even if your answer is wrong you sometimes get marks if you show that you knew how it should be worked out.


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