White Rose Maths Hub scheme of work

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Numbers below 0

  • Year group: Year 4
  • Term: Autumn
  • Topic: Negative numbers
  • Duration: 1 weeks
  • Keystage: KS2
  • Age Range: 8 to 9 yrs
  • Unit can be taught out of sequence: N
  • Week Range: 3

In this chapter, pupils count backwards through 0.

While pupils have used number lines in previous chapters, they may not have seen one with negative numbers. They may also have met problems they were unable to solve because they weren’t sure what happened below 0.

Pupils should be introduced to the concept of negative numbers using the number line. They count backwards through 0 to include negative numbers and solve simple problems in this way.

Throughout this chapter, number lines should be presented in both horizontal and vertical format. This will enable pupils to make connections with four-quadrant coordinate work in later chapters.

 Download all negative numbers chapters as a PDF 

Resources for this topic

White Rose Maths

Reasoning - Problem Solving - Money Problems (KS1/2) - March 8th

Today's problems are ones that involve reasoning and problem solving with the numbers. There are two problems for KS1 and two for KS2.

In KS1 problem children have to use a number line to work out the size of the interval and then locate a particular number. Children then have to work out the highest and lowest numbers you can make given three digit cards. Version 2 of the Y2 problems has a slightly less demanding problem Q1 that might be good as a warm up.

At KS2 children also need to find intervals on a number line, but the problem is a little more involved.. The second problem should be tacked systematically.

Every day in March the White Rose Maths Hub is aiming to put out a question of the day.

Tweet us @WRMathsHub a picture of your children's answers for a chance to win a prize.
By WRMaths

Negative numbers

This selection of resources cover counting backwards and forwards in negative numbers to problem solving with negative numbers.
By WRMaths

Mathematics Mastery

Numbers below zero

Mathematical discussion is a key element of the Mathematics Mastery programme.

Talk Tasks are a brilliant way of enabling pupils to develop their mathematical language, thinking, understanding and confidence.

This activity explores the concept of numbers below zero.

• Talk tasks are best completed in mixed attainment pairs, with pupils taking turns to listen and construct arguments
• Emphasis is on discussion rather than the solution, encouraging pupils to use key language and talk in full sentences
• Ask pupils to prove their answers in a variety of ways, using the CPA approach to support mathematical understanding and number sense

Like what you see? Mathematics Mastery is a professional development programme for teachers with a mission to transform mathematics education in the UK.

This task is just a taster of the complete classroom resources we offer. We also provide in-depth development training, online CPD, specialist support and assessment tools.

We believe all elements of our programme are vital in creating lasting change – enabling every child to enjoy and succeed in mathematics.

Want to find out more? Check out our free resources and blogs or join an information session.
By Mathematics Mastery

Numbers below zero

Enabling pupils to develop their mathematical reasoning skills through independent work is a key element of the Mathematics Mastery programme.
This guidance explores the concept of numbers below zero.
• Pupils should complete these tasks using concrete manipulatives as part of the CPA approach
• Pupils should be encouraged to explain their working in full sentences
• These tasks may be adapted with pupils working in pairs to encourage mathematical discussion

Like what you see?

Mathematics Mastery is a professional development programme for teachers with a mission to transform mathematics education in the UK.

This task is just a taster of the complete classroom resources we offer. We also provide in-depth development training, online CPD, specialist support and assessment tools.

We believe all elements of our programme are vital in creating lasting change – enabling every child to enjoy and succeed in mathematics.

Want to find out more? Check out our free resources and blogs or join an information session.
By Mathematics Mastery

Resources shared by teachers

Negative Numbers Board Game

This is a board game i created to consolidate learning after a few lessons on negative numbers. When used with the children they seemed to enjoy this and liked a challenge. Because of this challenge aspect i then told the children if they got an answer right they got a point and whoever had the most points at the end won. For middle ability children i gave them a mixture of the two sets of children. Enjoy!
By ellen1208

Negative Numbers Year 4

Starter Lesson input and Differentiated worksheets for year 4 negative numbers.

Worksheets made by me, IWB information collated from number of resources found on internet.
By charliyuk

Negative Number Worksheet + Tug O' War Game

A worksheet which builds up a number line, considers looking at the scale of the numbers on the number line and proceeds with sums which can be supported using the number lines the children have just filled in if needs be. This worksheet compliments the Tug O' War sheet nicely. This idea was found on the internet (somewhere!....) so it is not officially mine, but I made up the sheet and tweaked the instructions to make it more follow-able!
By googlie-eye