Sats: Too challenging? Maths tests divide opinion

Teachers suggest that the arithmetic test has 'been taken up a notch' after Year 6 pupils take two maths Sats today

Helen Ward

Sats: How difficult were the key stage 2 maths tests?

Initial reactions to the maths tests taken today by 10- and 11-year-olds were that they were harder than expected.

It is the third day of key stage 2 Sats week, and today around 600,000 Year 6 pupils were given two maths tests: a 30-minute arithmetic paper and a 40-minute maths reasoning paper.

And teachers sharing their views on Twitter felt that the papers were "interesting". 

Spag: 'Fair' test kicks off Sats week

Reading: Did the reading test meet your expectations?

Sats week: What to expect

How difficult were the Sats maths tests?



On the Tes forums, one user called bigbop commented: "Arithmetic has been taken up a notch. Reasoning probably fair overall."

And another commentator, PetalLove, added: "The reasoning paper wasn't particularly bad, but they have definitely made it slightly more challenging than before."

But the day brought some joy to frazzled Year 6 teachers in the online world, as "Sats test Chen" – a Twitter parody account of a fictional pupil who has appeared on Sats papers – popped up to start the day with a song.


Last year, these two maths tests were seen as harder than that years's reading and spelling, punctuation and grammar (Spag) papers, with teachers concerned that there were questions designed to "trick" children and that the arithmetic paper had been a "step up" on previous years in terms of difficulty. 

But the results for maths did rise slightly, with 76 per cent of pupils reaching the expected standard in 2018, up from 75 per cent in the previous year.

Tomorrow pupils will take the third maths paper, which is the final test of Sats week.

Note to teachers: we know how important these tests are, but please do not discuss the content as more children will be taking the paper over the next few days.




Register to continue reading for free

It only takes a moment and you'll get access to more news, plus courses, jobs and teaching resources tailored to you

Helen Ward

Helen Ward

Helen Ward is a reporter at Tes

Find me on Twitter @teshelen

Latest stories