Giving our young learners the best possible start in numeracy
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Giving our young learners the Best possible Start in numeracy. Overview. Mathematics Teaching and Learning Cycle DET numeracy programs – Count Me In Too CMIT), Best Start, Targeted Early Numeracy (TEN) Changes to the Early Numeracy Continuum Building Routines in the classroom

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Giving our young learners the Best possible Start in numeracy

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Giving our young learnersthe Best possible Start in numeracy


Mathematics Teaching and Learning Cycle

DET numeracy programs – Count Me In Too CMIT), Best Start, Targeted Early Numeracy (TEN)

Changes to the Early Numeracy Continuum

Building Routines in the classroom

Teaching Resources and internet links

Reflect on your current practice

  • How much of your teaching time is proportioned to mathematics?

  • How do you currently teach mathematics?

  • What documents do you currently use to inform planning, teaching and assessing?

Foundation Statements

Foundation Statements set out a clear picture of the knowledge, skills and

understanding that each student should develop at each stage of primary


Mathematics K – 6 Syllabus

Embedded in all DET syllabus documents is an understanding that explicit and systematic teaching and learning will best occur when teachers follow the process articulated by the teaching and learning cycle.

Teaching and Learning Cycle

  • Discuss with a partner what you think is in the Teaching and Learning cycle.

  • Draw the Teaching and Learning cycle on a piece of paper.

Teaching and Learning Cycle

DET Numeracy Programs

Count Me In Too

The Count Me In Too (CMIT) numeracy program is an on-going initiative of the DET. The program melds findings from research about how children learn mathematics, with research on effective professional development.

  • Aim

  • Help teachers understand children’s mathematical development.

  • Improve children’s achievement in mathematics.

Count Me In Too

Count Me In Too

The transition from unitary strategies to collection-based strategies underpins the structure of the framework.

Teaching and Learning Cycle

Where are my students now?

  • It is the assessment and evaluation that drives planning & teaching.

  • Careful planning creates the most appropriate teaching & learning activities to lift the students to the next level of understanding.

Best Start assesses students school entry skills and understandings.

What do I want my students to learn?

The syllabus should be used to plan and program explicit teaching experiences.

  • Outcomes

  • Scope and continuum

  • Key ideas

How is my teaching program going to cater for the students’ needs?

What will I do to maximise student learning opportunity to meet the syllabus outcomes?

How will my students get there?

What will the students do (or produce) to demonstrate attainment of syllabus outcomes?

How well do I expect them to do?

How do I know when my students get there?

Have the students achieved the syllabus outcomes?

  • Consistent teacher judgement is essential.

  • The value of your professional knowledge of the students.

  • Continuous assessment

2010 Best Start results

Aspect 1: Counting Sequences

1A Forward number word sequences

Number of students not assessed

1197 1.9%

2010 Best Start results

Aspect 1: Counting Sequences

1B Numeral Identification

Number of students not assessed

1218 1.8%

2010 Best Start results

Aspect 2: Counting as a problem solving process – Early arithmetical strategies

Number of students not assessed

1255 2%

Early Arithmetical Strategies (EAS)






Linking EAS levels to the Syllabus

Early Numeracy Continuum

Changes to the continuum

Counting sequences - verbal & written labels

FNWS : Counts beyond 100 (NS2.1)

BNWS: Counts backwards from any number (NS2.1)

Changes to the continuum

  • Early Arithmetical Strategies – EAS

  • In the perceptual and figurative levels, the text has been rewritten in dot points so that it was easier to read.

  • The last 2 points from the facilelevel have been moved down to the aspect Pattern and number structure. The combinations to 10 and 20 are part-whole knowledge and are closely linked to patterning.

  • The ladder at Counting-on-and-backand in the first level in Place value is to show that the students must be at the Counting-on-and-back level to be on the Place value framework.

Changes to the continuum

  • Place value and Multiplication & division

  • Some of the text has been changed to dot points.

  • Place value has been put before Multiplication & division.

Targeted Early Numeracy (TEN)

The program recognises that a small percentage of students are at risk of numeracy failure, despite participation within a quality early numeracy program.

Teaching occurs within a normal daily lesson block, without withdrawal or an additional specialist teacher.

Early Arithmetical Strategies

The Early Arithmetical Strategies (EAS) aspect of the Best Start Early Numeracy Continuum underpins the assessment and teaching of the TEN program.

Broad targets have been set to assist teachers in identifying students for participation in the program:

TEN targets

Broad Kindergarten target

All Kindergarten students will have reached at least the perceptual counting stage in the range to 20 by the end of the year.

Broad Year 1 target

All Year 1 students will be at least able to show figurative counting across the decade by the end of the year.

Broad Year 2 target

All Year 2 students will be at least counting-on-and-back in the range to 30 by the end of the year.

Building classroom routines

  • Factors for consideration:

  • High repetition of activities.

  • Activities should occur throughout the day NOT only in the mathematics lesson.

  • Even though TEN concentrates on EAS, activities on other aspects such as FNWS and BNWS are also important.


TEN focuses on short, focussed and frequent sessions within the classroom, using activities designed to move these students to the next stage in the framework.



How can the activities be a part of the teaching day?

Think about your class routine. What are some of the activities that occur within your classroom?


DENS - Three minute lesson breakers

There are plenty of teachable moments in a day that don’t have to be written into your timetable.

What do you see as the biggest challenge for teachers?


  • Time for programming to cater for different ability groups

  • Time to devise learning activities

  • Time to create resources

  • Time for classroom organisation

DET Resources

Curriculum Support

Programming Support

Teaching Resources

Where to next?

  • An effective numeracy lesson

  • Creating Early Learning Plans

  • Differentiating learning objects

“There can be no doubt that the first three years of school (K – 2) have a profound effect on the rest of the child’s mathematical education, because it is in the first three years that the child first experiences success or failure, interest or boredom, challenge or frustration.

Bob Wright

Mathematics in the Lower Primary Years

Mathematics Education Research Journal, 1994

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