Master – (verb) to learn how to do something well.

Age related expectation (or expected standard) at the end of an academic year is understanding every objective within the year group objectives. Above age related expectation (or greater depth)  is the ability to use, apply, investigate that understanding to be able to say that it has been mastered.

Do you remember as a child, trying to collect pocket money in your money box? Every Saturday morning you would collect your 20p from your parents, eager eyes and bushy tail. You would skip merrily over to your money box, drop in your new found wealth and listen to the satisfying rattle as it joined the other coins waiting to be spent. You then routinely opened your money box, looked at all your coins, admired them, counted them all up and dropped them all back in again – safe in the knowledge that you had slightly more than the previous week and that you were heading in the right direction.

Now imagine every child in your class has an empty box in September. You teach the children in your class the first objective from your year group objectives, some children might need some stepping stones to achieve that objective, some won’t. Once every child is secure in their understanding of that objective, it is placed into the empty box and you begin to teach the second objective. Once every child is secure in their understanding of that objective, it is placed in the box alongside the previous objective.

Every child now has two objectives in their box. So, at the end of every unit of teaching (once every child has that secure understanding), let’s take out those two objectives, polish them up before placing them back in the box ready for the next objective to join them.

If the expectation is set that every child achieves every objective before moving on, then every child will be taught to age related expectation (EXS) at the very least – with the evidence to prove it to anyone who disputes it.

Click here for an NCETM (National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics) summary recently updated and released which supports the idea of high expectation.

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