MULTIPLICATION TABLES CHECK (MTC) - Year 4
You may be aware that from June 2020 there was a new test for Year 4 children called the ‘Multiplication Tables Check’. Here’s what you need to know:
We’re not worried: Under the National Curriculum, primary school children are expected to know all the times table up to 12 times 12 by the end of Year 4. So we’ve been preparing students to know their times tables by the end of Year 4 for quite some time now and are not concerned about the check at all.
Why do we learn times tables? In primary school, times table knowledge is vital for quick mental maths calculations and problem-solving, as well as for many of the topics children learn in every year group and ultimately more challenging topics in Year 5 and 6 (division, fractions, percentages).
The check itself:
Will take place in the summer term in June
Is done online and in school using a computer or tablet
Can be done one student at a time, in groups or as a class
Will take no longer than 5 minutes
Will feature 25 questions and children will have 6 seconds to answer each question
There’s no problem-solving or division just simple ‘3 x 4 =?’ type questions.
The results are for the teachers. There is no pass or fail mark. The results of the test are not published publicly, they’re not going to end up on a league tables and they’re not to be concerned about. The results are for teachers to use so we can provide an even better education!
No Stress! I am sure that along with you, we do not want our children worried or stressed about the check. The government has called it a ‘check’ rather than a ‘test’ or ‘exam’ for a reason. We will endeavour not to draw pupils’ attention to the check so will not be referencing in class unduly. Please be supportive of this approach and refrain from talking about the checks too much at home too.
Practise at Home: Because Maths is such a big and hugely important subject, and we will, of course, continue to teach the full curriculum, we will need your support to help practise the times tables with your children on a regular basis (at least 3 times a week and more if you can). Some easy ways to do this include:
Asking questions such as ‘what is 7 x 8?’
Reciting times tables by rote (4 times 1 is 4, 4 times 2 is 8)
Singing times tables songs (so many online options)
Using apps and online games (see below)
As you know, we have access to TT Rockstars (an online times tables platform). This platform enables children to log on, both at school and at home, and practise times tables fact recall. Please encourage your child to practise as much as they can at home to increase their recall speed and cover all 12 times tables.
If you have a question or want to offer your thoughts on any of the above, please bring them to the attention of child’s teacher.