Number Sense Intermediate Phase

Number Sense Intermediate Phase

Bridging the gaps in the development of number sense and place value using the spiral curriculum in the intermediate phase

Foreword

Jika Communication and Training welcomes you to this course, Number Sense Intermediate Phase.

This course is broken up as follows:

Participants will attend 2 contact sessions (Session 1 will be 1 day and Session 2 will be 1 days, with 3 weeks of  experiential on-site learning and application of what was presented in the first contact session.

Session 1 (1 day)

Ice breaker activity and a focus on theory which will be presented in experiential mode: in other words, participants will first engage in an activity, reflect on it and then discover the essence of the activity on their own, in pairs or in groups.  Self-discovery is key to this course which not only guides learners through the content in activity-based methodologies, but also allows room for individual reflection which we feel is an invaluable dimension of embedded learning.

During day one, participants will after certain sections, complete activities in a separate workbook. The workbook will also include activities that have been planned for on-site (at school) application and reflection.  These tasks performed while the participant is at work, will inform the next training session.

EXPERIENTIAL ON-SITE LEARNING BETWEEN SESSION 1 AND 2

Session 2 (1 day)

The “homework tasks” are discussed and the next part of the course is completed, with participants completing their continuous assessment and reflection activities.  This workbook is handed in and serves as part of the participants PDP.  Within 4 weeks, workbooks are returned to us and we send them to SACE points to be uploaded.

Introduction

The paragraph below came from an invitation to a workshop with the topic Developing Number Sense by Aarnout Brombacher:

At the heart of all mathematics is number. For children to be successful in mathematics they need to have a strong sense of number. Children who fail to develop a strong sense of number in the early school years are unlikely to make significant progress in their mathematical development in later years.

Concerns about poor performance in mathematics in general and in South Africa in particular are well founded. Few children achieve their potential with respect to Mathematics.

Bradley S Witzel said: To achieve in mathematics, learners must acquire a good sense of numbers early in their academic career.

If the development of number sense is so important in the early school years, how well do we succeed in this important task in South African schools?

Although the data (from ANA) confirms a decline in performance between Grade1 and Grade 3, the average percentages for Mathematics in Grades 1, 2 and 3 are still much higher than the averages of the learners in Grades 4, 5 and 6. The steep decline of performance in Grades 4 to 6 causes the actual marks to be very low.

We have identified a number of risk factors that may impact negatively on performance. One of them is prior knowledge and performance of the learners – teachers must remember that few learners enter Grade 4 having obtained a mark of 80% or more for Mathematics in Grade 3.

This paragraph came from an article in the SML eNewsletter Vol8No2 with the topic STOP the DERAILMENT of MATHEMATICS in Grade 4 (to read the newsletter, go to jutaacademic.co.za/sml/volume-8-2014-number-2). Even if a learner obtained 80% in grade 3, there is already a 20% gap in knowledge! This gap is getting bigger with every consecutive year.

Let us look at the evidence to see if this is really true!