Maths Champions aims to improve the maths skills of pupils in private, voluntary and independent early years settings. It is a one-year intervention developed and delivered by the National Day Nurseries Association (NDNA).
Each setting nominates a graduate practitioner to be a ‘Maths Champion'. NDNA provides each Maths Champion with two, two-hour online courses on auditing early years maths teaching and leading the intervention in their setting. The Maths Champions then audit their nursery’s current practices, staff confidence, and the current mathematical competence of both staff and pupils using tools provided online.
The Maths Champions are expected to use the results of the audit to create an action plan for supporting their colleagues to improve their maths teaching. They implement this plan with support from online resources, short monthly webinars and tailored one-to-one support provided by NDNA. The Maths Champions run the audit at the end of the intervention to see if the setting has made improvements.
The intervention starts with two online courses to support the setting's graduate in becoming a Maths Champion. These are intended to help the Maths Champion evaluate and measure the impact of their practice, and give them the skills to mentor and lead the team in the intervention. Each course takes around two hours. Once completed, the Maths Champion then works with a team of other practitioners within their settings.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) evaluated Maths Champions using a randomised controlled trial.
The security of the evaluation was weakened by the fact that some pupils were not included in the final analysis because they were not tested when the intervention ended. 36% of the pupils who started the trial were not included in the final analysis. The study found a mean effect size of +0.10 for primary maths.
The result of this EEF evaluation does not meet the criteria for an E4I rating due to the number of pupils who started the trial and were not included in the final analysis.
The EEF are now re-testing Maths Champions in a larger number of settings, including school-based nurseries, and putting in place measures to increase the security of the evaluation. The results should be available in Spring 2020.
National Day Nurseries Association
- Early Years
Costs around £216 per year per setting