Maths Passport FAQs

Why are we trialling the Passport system?

We are trialling this system to ensure that pupils don’t have any gaps in their mental maths knowledge. Things such as doubling, halving, number bonds, times tables and their related facts are the building blocks of mathematics and of being numerate. The passport system should ensure that children have a comprehensive and well-ordered knowledge of these basic facts.

How best can I support my child?

Try and facilitate practice with your child little and often. Perhaps sometimes verbally ask them a few questions from their passport; try some of the practice games online with them. Emphasise how important this knowledge is and how relevant it is to everyday life.

How often should my child practise?

On a daily basis, wherever possible. We know that everyone is busy but in the car or whilst walking the dog, for example, is a great time for a little practice.

How long should we spend?

Around 10 minutes or so at a time is fine. If you child is keen to do more, then that is fine, too!

My child is not being moved through the passports quickly at school. Why not?

Different pupils will progress at different rates. Sometimes, they may move through a passport quickly, other times they may take longer to fully learn all the objectives. The class teacher will move each pupil on when they are fully confident that all objectives have been met.

Why does each objective need to be tested twice?

We want to be really sure that your child knows that objective inside out. Testing them twice a few days, or perhaps even a week, apart will ensure that they know them thoroughly and haven’t just committed them to short-term memory.

How many targets should I work on at once?

This is the pupil’s choice. They can work on one target or several from the same passport at the same time.

Why isn’t my child writing much down during the activities?

Children need to learn these targets mentally. Writing them down may help some pupils learn them initially, but the focus remains on speed of mental recall.

What does the test look like?

The children will be tested in a variety of ways. It may be that a child sits with an adult and demonstrates with objects or says the answers, it may be that a group of pupils or whole class will be tested at the same time. Teachers may see or hear something in a lesson which tells them the pupil knows an objective. For younger pupils, they may sometimes be tested by some of our mathematically-confident older pupils.

It is important to remember that we are looking for instant recall.

How does my child move to the next passport?

Once all their targets have been signed off and the teacher is entirely confident that all objectives have been met, the passport will be signed off, sent home and the next passport in the sequence will be issued. An information slip with the new passport objectives on will also be sent home. This will enable you to know what your child should be working on.

What if my child gets ‘stuck’ on a particular passport?

We understand that, at times, a pupil may get stuck on an objective or passport. If this occurs, extra input and practice will be provided to the child to try and get them over that hurdle. If this still doesn’t help, your child’s teacher will have a conversation with you to come up with an alternative plan. In exceptional circumstances, it may be that the objective is left for a period of time and then returned to at a later date.

Where can I get more information?

There are other sections on this blog with further information and examples. If needs be, please also see your child’s class teacher with any questions.

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