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Sample essay topic, essay writing: A Critical Analysis Of The National Numeracy Strategy - 1219 words
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.. the year with the best teaching found in year 6 and reception. The energy, determination and skill with which year 6 teachers have approached the need to raise standards should not be underestimated. 5.www.ofsted.gov.uk/about/press/nr2000-74.htm (04.01.01)However it seems that one of the main criticisms of the Strategy is that other subject areas within the National Curriculum may be suffering. This may be due to too much emphasis being placed on the teaching of Mathematics and English and not allowing enough time to focus on other subjects for e.g. geography, history and art.
As noted by one educational journalist, Diane Hofkins.. Some teachers are spending too much time on Literacy and Numeracy lessons, often occupying more than one hour with no corresponding gains in what is being achieved.. It is important that schools are disciplined in their use of time for mathematics and English in order not to erode the rest of the curriculum. 6. www.tesprimary.co.uk/digest/strategies.asp (04.01.01)Furthermore Geraldine Hackett in Numeracy not without cost, states.. 'More than 80 per cent of schools report they are spending far less time on the humanities, art and physical education.' 7
www.tes.co.uk/tp/900000/20001006/N (10.10.00)However, teaching methods that have been adopted due to the implementation of the Strategy are concerned with providing as stimulating an environment as possible for the pupils. Due to this it has been noted that, other subject areas do in fact benefit from the implementation of the strategy. This is due to these methods of teaching being used to focus not just within the National Numeracy and Literacy Strategies but with other curriculum core subjects. OFSTED report that.. 'Teachers have adapted their techniques, bringing clearer focus lessons.' 8. www.tesprimary.co.uk/digest/strategies.asp (04.01.01)It seems that a balance needs to be adopted within the teaching timetable in order for the whole Curriculum to be successful. Too much time spent on the teaching of Numeracy and Literacy will no doubt cause problems within other subject areas.
However by adopting more stimulating teaching methods throughout the whole curriculum, will no doubt produce good results all round. Due to both Numeracy and Literacy being areas that link in with so many other subjects, as already stated, there should be no need to spend extra sessions solely in these areas, thus allowing time to teach the rest of the curriculum. Therefore it seems that it is the responsibility of each individual school to ensure that this is carried out successfully. According to OFSTED the most common weakness within one in five schools was that of..Headteachers taking a back seat and delegating too much to co-ordinators, including in some cases sole responsibility for monitoring and evaluating teachers. 9. www.osted.gov.uk/about/press/nr2000-74.htm (04.01.01)There has also been some concern with lower achievers who may need extra support. The one-hour numeracy session does not allow specific time for these children to catch up.
If the Framework guidelines are followed too rigidly by concentrating on one task and then moving on to another the next day, then there will always be those pupils who have not grasped the concept of the task within the time allocated. The Framework suggests that whilst the teacher may be working intensively with individuals or groups during the main teaching activity, this does not allocate sufficient time for the teacher to spend with those children that continually have difficulty. One researcher Debra Myhill noted that.. 'The whole-class teaching of the Literacy and Numeracy strategies fails to involve under-achieving pupils.' 10.Primary Practice, (26.09.00)Although this method of teaching does enable the teacher to assess the children more readily, time needs to be allocated in order to follow up the findings of this assessment with future planning, which may involve additional lessons in particular areas of mathematics. It is stated by Sue Atkinson in Ability groups- the pros and cons that.. 'One of the main purposes of the National Numeracy Strategy is to bring up the level of the children who are below average'.
11. Primary Maths and Science (January 2000)Some critics argue that due to the Strategy's targets, teachers will concentrate on the higher-achievers and the less able will fall further and further behind the rest of the class.It states in an article by Wright, Martland and Stafford, that.. There is a danger already apparent in the educational press, that schools will concentrate on the children who are likely to attain the desired level. Opposing views are also evident; giving warnings that struggling pupils will fall still further behind thus increasing the danger of social exclusion. 12. Primary Practice (26.09.00)Furthermore they argue that with regards to the Numeracy Strategy ..
The approach described may well raise standards overall but it does not give sufficient detail, nor provide the less confident teacher with support firmly grounded in theory, to help the less able children. 13. Primary Practice (26.09.00)However it seems that extra support should be provided at home with the help of parents. It is suggested in the Framework that parents should be invited to the school to see exactly what the Numeracy Strategy involves, enabling them to support their children's learning at home. Schools need to support parents in order for them to help and encourage their children with their learning.
Support from both teachers and parent's is essential if a child is to get the most out of the Strategy. The overall results since the implementation of the strategy are more encouraging with the strategy's impact on pupil's attainment at both key stage 1 and 2. The proportion of pupil's at key stage 1 attaining level 2B or higher rose by nine percentage points to 73% in 2000. Further more at the end of key stage 2 a rise by three percentage points in children reaching level four or above consolidated the previous year's big rise to 72%, which is just three points below the Government's national target for year 6 pupils by 2002. 14.www.ofsted.fov.uk/about/press/nr2000-74.htm (04.01.01)This does in fact prove that the majority of schools are managing to implement the Strategy successfully. The main concerns seem to be that in order for the Strategy to be successful the standard of teaching needs to be highly effective.
This involves the beliefs of teachers, which need to move away from the old traditional methods of teaching and promote as stimulating environment as possible for the pupils. There needs to be more emphasis on lower achievers so that they do not fall behind and parents need to be kept informed of their child's progress in order to assist with their learning at home. Children that have particular difficulty in mathematics need to be assessed straight away, in order to plan future exercises that ensure that they do not fall behind. It is also important that links are made between mathematics and other curriculum core subjects so that children are aware that mathematics is not an abstract subject but that it can and does in fact relate to the real world. This does not mean that the rest of the curriculum should be disrupted in order to teach mathematics but that simple links should be highlighted. If this is carried out successfully then the whole curriculum should be manageable and other subject areas should not suffer as critics have pointed out.
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