20th April 2001 at 01:00
NUMBER FRAMES - 10 double-sided laminated posters with accompanying teacher's handbook. Nelson pound;65.

Number Frames is the latest addition to Nelson's expanding Connect series of standalone numeracy resources which are designed to slot into any maths scheme of work. Central to the package are the A2 laminated double-sided write-on "posters". Not as colourful as the term might suggest, the posters (black, white and two shades of blue) provide 20 standard primary maths teaching formats such as a hundred square, number lines and squares, arithmagons, and a place value chart.

The teacher's handbook offers a variety of ways for using each format to address specific numeracy framework objectives selected from a range of strands. It is clearly laid out and easy to use with two double-page spreads devoted to each poster format. For each format, here are sound ideas for two oral or mental lesson starters, and outlines for two main lessons (including the teaching introduction, pupil activities and plenary). There is also a photocopiable facsimile of the format for use as a worksheet.

One of the fundamental strengths of the numeracy framework is that, apart from the odd tweak, the same core objectives are used for all year groups, with only the number ranges changing. The author takes advantage of this, presenting with each activity the modifications required for each of the years. This makes the package ideal for classes in small schools where the age range can be wide. The author also provides, within each age group, further differentiation with suggestions for lower, middle and higher achievers. There is a complementary package covering Years 3 to 6.

Paul Harrison

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