Using Learning Assistants to Good Effect

At Longniddry we roughly tracked a class of children and then considered possible ways of planning an effective numeracy lesson for all pupils.  The tracker made it very clear that the teacher could not use a differentiated lesson. She was required to deliver two separate lessons (Some children were working within numbers to 20 and the rest of the class were working with numbers up to a thousand, multiplication & division). This raised the issue of how much time we spend teaching numeracy each day, ensuring that every child gets quality learning and teaching experiences.

One solution is using learning assistants to effect: providing them with some training in the MR strategies so that they can be directed to groups within a lesson to practise skills (warm up), support problem solving and challenge thinking.

This is exactly what Longniddry are trying to do. The Learning Assistants had their first taste of Maths Recovery today. We looked at Number Word Sequences and looked at common errors and ways of supporting this. We also had a go at bunny ears (a fun ‘game’ that uses finger patterns to combine and partition numbers). The group  reported that they now felt confident delivering these activities under the class teachers instruction – fantastic!