Supporting all families

“Parents are a child’s first and most enduring educators, and their influence cannot be overestimated"
Peter Williams, 2008
"Much work is traditionally done by school staff at all levels to raise the self-esteem of pupils, but much less consideration is given to the self-esteem of parents"
Clare Campbell, 2011

Maths is a valuable life skill we all use every day.

By working with parents and carers to engage with their children's maths learning, you can raise the skill level of both the child and their family.

Key recommendations:

  • Make sure parents, carers and staff know how important parental input is and the difference they can make to children's achievement. By being engaged in their child's learning, parents and carers improve their children's life chances.
  • Many parents and carers will be anxious about maths, particularly new teaching methods. Make information easily available and clear, in different languages where necessary. Support parents' maths skills by becoming a Challenge Partner.
  • Make parental engagement a target for your staff. Everyone has to be on board for it to work.
  • Communication is key. Offer clear information and advice, and use technology to reach parents. Let parents know their child's successes as well as any problems, so that they don't associate school contact with bad news.
  • Be approachable. 'Listen and share - don't judge and tell' Lynne Gavin, Headteacher, Pakeman Primary

Resources to share with parents

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BBC Bitesize

Clear explanations, examples and diagrams for all school curriculum maths.

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NRICH games, puzzles and investigations

Full of information and activities which develop children's thinking and reasoning skills.

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Oxford Owl

Features activities, simple ideas, top tips and eBooks to help your child with their maths at home.

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Maths 4 Mums and Dads

This site explains some of the milestones children make between the ages of 3-and-11-years-old.

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The Everyday Maths Project

The Everyday Maths project aimed to empower parents of primary school children to support their children in discussing and thinking about maths.

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parent and child

10 Quick Ways to Engage Parents in Teaching Their Children Times Tables

One of National Numeracy's consultants, Sue Skyrme, shares her tips for engagement

Easy Peasy

Help parents prepare their children for learning at school through play, including maths games and more.

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Maths with Parents

Videos for primary schools, explaining to parents how maths is taught at school.

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Ideas to encourage parental engagement

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Encourage mathematical conversations between parents and children

Story sacks are easily adaptable to maths sacks.

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Parent Champions

Recruit a volunteer parent or teaching assistant whose role will be to champion maths within the school or organisation, and support parents to engage with maths.

Parent Champion

Parents as Partners in Their Children's Learning

General rather than maths specific, this is a thorough exploration of how to engage parents.

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The Sutton Trust Toolkit

A complete toolkit for school improvement, which features a section on parental involvement.

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Plan school events together online

PTAsocial is a simple, paid for solution for the whole community to plan events.

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Tapestry Online Learning Journal

Tapestry is a paid for online learning journal for EYFS settings that parents and teachers use together.

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Families Learning Together

A paid for online resource that provides video explanations, demonstrations and activities to support each number skill in maths for primary school children from years 1 to 6.

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Count On Us: Parental Engagement

Guidance for schools on setting up their parental engagement strategy in maths.

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Becoming Numerate Good Practice Guide

Examples of good practice from National Numeracy's work in Hackney primary schools, including parental engagement ideas.

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Workshops/events with parents

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Everyday Maths from Bristol University

Running workshops with parents of Year 3 and 4 children in 20 Bristol primary schools.

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Family maths events

Maths on Toast run community events where maths is family fun.

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Maths Busking

Maths tricks for home, school and street entertainment. Learn the tricks for free online or book a paid visit.

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Dance Equation

Provides dance performances and workshops for schools and communities. (Paid for resource).​

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