Mathematics tests are used in most 11+ selection examinations. Your child will complete maths assessments at school to determine whether they have achieved the required standard of mathematical skills, reasoning and problem-solving. However, the maths topics in 11+ tests are often slightly more advanced than those on the national curriculum within your child’s class.
This blog will explore how to support children with answering mathematical word problems and provide strategies that can help develop their numeracy reasoning skills. Firstly, it is important to recognise that students need a strong foundation in mathematics before they can be expected to tackle complex or multi-step word problems. This secure base involves having a solid grasp of the four operations. For example, if a child is presented with a ratio word problem but finds division or multiplication calculations difficult, they might struggle to solve the problem. Therefore, giving children the opportunity to learn their times tables, addition and subtraction facts and division sums allows them to make better connections between the numbers and the words wrapped around these figures.
Word problems are important because they test the student’s ability to understand when to apply what they have learned in maths to real life situations. There are several approaches that can be taken to answering word problems. One common acronym used in schools is RUCSAC. It stands for: