East Lothian's Number Signposts are based on Maths Recovery Approaches

Research shows that there are significant differences in children's numerical knowledge when they begin school. These differences increase as they progress through school. There is a clear tendency for low attainers in the early years to continue to be low attainers.

However, over the years, teachers have recognised the potential of understanding SEAL (Stages of Early Arithmetical Learning) and using Maths Recovery Approaches to promote a problem solving in numeracy. We have created a framework that helps profile an individual's numerical knowledge and offers clear guidance in teaching approaches that nurtures their understanding. By introducing this into classrooms we can ensure that number is understood well from the start.


Our signposts focuses on children's own understanding of number thus developing sound counting strategies that are based on understanding rather than processes.


The following videos highlight the differences between a child that understands number and has developed effective counting strategies, and a child that has been taught processes. The counting tasks they are given are the same (taken from a P3 textbook) but the children's approaches are completely different.

The Facile Child

This child has sound knowledge of number sequences and structures and this enables him to solve the task using jump strategies.

The Counting-On Child

This child relies on counting by one and an algorithm process to solve the task. He has been taught a split strategy process to solve the task and he applies this correctly. This split strategy only requires the child to count in ones and the process does not require knowledge of number structures.


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