Enhancing Primary Mathematics Teaching and Learning

Enhancing Primary Mathematics Teaching and Learning

Enhancing Primary Mathematics Teaching and Learning

Enhancing Primary Mathematics Teaching and Learning


"This book is the third in an important trilogy of edited collections on the teaching and learning of primary mathematics. To each book the editor, Ian Thompson, has attracted a team of expert contributors, and himself set the characteristically high standard of writing and clarity... When, in 10 or 20 years' time, people want to know about the state of English primary mathematics at the turn of the 21st century, they will turn to this volume. You would do well to read it now."
Mathematics in Schools

"This is the third book in the popular series edited by Ian Thompson that brings together an impressive array of contributing authors. Current issues are discussed in an informed but concise way that makes research accessible to the wider community of mathematics educators."
Julia Anghileri, University of Cambridge

This book explores the effect that the National Numeracy Strategy and its successor, the Primary Strategy, have had on the way in which mathematics is taught in primary schools. Prominent contributors examine the Strategies' recommendations from the perspective of their own research areas or interests, and discuss the issues involved, including:

  • Ideas for extending current practice
  • Suggestions of important aspects of mathematics teaching that are being given little or no emphasis
  • Alternative approaches that could be integrated into current practice
  • Aspects of current practice that need to take account of recent research findings or emerging issues.
Each chapter discusses implications for teaching and learning primary mathematics. The book will be particularly useful for trainees, practising teachers, mathematics coordinators and numeracy consultants.

Contributors : Mundher Adhami, Mike Askew, Carol Aubrey, Margaret Brown, Ann Dowker, Rosemary Hafeez, Steve Higgins, Keith Jones, Lesley Jones, Valsa Koshy, Alison Millett, Claire Mooney, Laurie Rousham, Malcolm Swan, Ian Thompson, Helen J Williams.


Any book that attempts to make suggestions for improving the teaching and learning of mathematics in England in the early part of the twenty-first century must inevitably engage in a discussion, either explicitly or implicitly, of the National Numeracy Strategy (NNS). This government-backed project, adopted by the vast majority of schools in the country, was introduced in September 1999 and later became an integral part of the Primary Strategy in 2003. The purpose of the NNS' Framework for Teaching Mathematics from Reception to Year 6 was to help schools set appropriately high expectations for their children and to help teachers understand how their pupils should progress through the primary years. It had a substantial influence on the teaching and learning of mathematics in almost every primary school in England.

This book is the third in a set of three edited collections concerned with the teaching and learning of mathematics in primary schools. The first, Teaching and Learning Early Number (Open University Press 1997), looked at research findings concerned with children's early number acquisition and the implications of this research for classroom practice. Some of this research had a substantial influence on the structure of those sections of the Framework dealing with early years numeracy. The second book, Issues in Teaching Numeracy in Primary Schools (Open University Press 1999) provided background and details to many of the issues which led to the development of the NNS. This third book makes a considered attempt to assess how the teaching of mathematics might be enhanced in the wake of the influence of the NNS.

Enhancing Primary Mathematics Teaching comprises 17 chapters arranged in six loosely-structured sections covering issues relating to the following areas: subject content, pedagogy, assessment, intervention, information and communication technology (ICT) and research. Chapters in all sections discuss theory in relation to practice, and some chapters contain cross-references to other chapters where this is deemed relevant. Each chapter, however, has been written to be read as a free-standing unit.

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