In June 2022, all children within Year 4 will take part in a statutory multiplication tables check. Each child will take a short online test to make sure their times tables knowledge is at the expected level. Due to the impact of school closures last year, we understand that children may have gaps in their times table knowledge. In Year 4, we have put an emphasis on times table practice; we are not only covering them as part of our maths lessons, but also in the afternoons. We would greatly appreciate it if you could continue to support your child with their times tables learning at home.
What is the purpose of the multiplication tables check?
The DfE state that the motivation behind the multiplication tables check is to allow teachers a chance to identify children who may need some more help with their times tables. And in doing so, stop them from falling further behind their peers, as they move up to Year 5 (and then Year 6). It is important to note that it is not a judgement on what your child can do, but a way for the school to know how their teaching is going and to adjust their focus if needed. Schools have a three-week window in the month of June to have their Year 4 children sit the test, but will be free to choose which day within that three-week period they choose to sit it. All state schools in England, including maintained schools, special schools, academies and free schools will be required to enter their children for the Multiplication Tables Check.
What is the Year 4 multiplication tables check?
The multiplication tables check is an online test for pupils in Year 4. Pupils are asked to answer 25 questions on times tables from their 2 times tables to their 12 times tables. They are given six seconds per question, with three seconds rest between each question, so the test should last less than five minutes. Questions about the six, seven, eight, nine, and 12 times tables are likely to come up most often, as these are the hardest for most children to learn. It’s a good idea to focus on these tricky times tables with your child.
What can we do to support children in Year 4?
At Newdale, we work hard to ensure children are learning their multiplication tables regularly and their progress is carefully monitored. As well as working on their multiplication tables at school, it is vital that children are practising at home too, with their parents’ support and guidance. We have invested heavily into Times Table Rockstars and strongly believe that regular practice on this site, will help to improve children’s speed and accuracy, as well as becoming used to answering questions using a device.
What can you do to help your child in practising their times tables?
We recommend a number of strategies to support your child in the run-up to and aftermath of the times tables test including:
- Times tables chanting: “6, 12, 18, 24…”;
- Times tables chanting in reverse order: “108, 99, 90, 81…”;
- Using times tables songs (see website for recordings)
- Using apps, like the one by Times Tables Rock Stars or Hit the Button
- Using free online games, like those on Top Marks
- Asking your child multiplication calculations out of order, like: “What is 4 x 7? What is 9 x 5? What is 6 x 11?”;
- Using pasta pieces or pebbles to show groups of numbers representing times tables, e.g. four groups of three pasta shells to show 3 x 4 = 12;
Mrs Fenn Mr Jackson