As the half term draws in, pupils and teachers everywhere are having a well deserved rest before SATs season starts in earnest. During this time, we’ve had a chance to reflect on the successes of the last year and what’s next!

It has been an exciting year for schools using our 1-to-1 Maths interventions, resources and online CPD.

Over the course of the last 12 months we’ve worked hard to make sure our 1-to-1 tuition is more affordable and accessible than ever before. In fact, due to this, we’re now the largest provider of 1-to-1 maths tuition to primary pupils in the UK!

From the first session for pupils using our 1-to-1 (“Mission Zero”) to the CPD training we give our tutors, to the brand new Maths Hub used by thousands of teachers across the UK; there’s a lot of new Third Space stuff to look out for.

Read this blog to find out about our new free resources, and how we’ve developed our online tuition. Or navigate the links below to read more on:

How To Structure Your SATs Revision Lessons
What Great Diagnostic Assessment Looks Like
Updated Training for our Maths Specialists
Your New Maths Hub

Our New SATs Revision Programme

We’re lucky to have worked with so many students over our years teaching Maths 1-to-1 to pupils. As this means we have data from running over 30,000 sessions to inform our practice.

For our new SATs Programme, we analysed and reviewed this data to improve progress and impact for pupils receiving 1-to-1 Third Space tuition.

Specifically, combining our own data and analysis of the 6 new curriculum SATs tests allows us to provide schools with revision methods directly in line with National Curriculum requirements.

How To Structure SATs Revision Lessons

For our new SATs Programme, we have developed 40 new lessons to match the 2014 Maths curriculum, and adapted the content of these lessons according to our analysis of the last two years of SATs papers.

We have ordered them in regard to the highest impact expected in the 2018 SATs exams (see below). This allows us to identify which lessons should be taught in order to have the highest impact on SATs scores. You can use the ordering to structure your SATs revision lessons too.

A Table showing Third Space Learning SATs topics analysis, which informs how we order the teaching of SATs revision lessons
A Table showing Third Space Learning SATs topics analysis, which informs how we order the teaching of SATs revision lessons

That’s your lesson orders sequenced. But what about the actual nuts and bolts of individual lesson structure? We structure each of our SATs revision lessons in three key parts (and advise you do the same):

The three aspects of a Third Space Learning SATs lesson: revision, practice questions, and concept fillers to plug gaps
The three aspects of a Third Space Learning SATs lesson: revision, practice questions, and concept fillers to plug gaps

It’s a SATs revision lesson structure that is flexible and easy to adapt for every schools’ context. So you will easily be able to adapt it for use in your own planning. That’s what helps us ensure our lessons line up with the 700 plus schools we work with every week.

And – for schools that use our 1-to-1 intervention – we’ve made sure to follow the calculation policy for each school, so that we provide lessons in a way that is familiar to them.

The Third Space Mission: Truly Great Diagnostic Assessment

Pupils engagement is central to our mission to help children learn (and enjoy) Maths. To that end, we’ve worked hard to make their initial diagnostic assessment, Mission Zero, even more exciting (and accurate!). Take a look below:

The home page on the Third Space Learning pupil platform
The home page on the Third Space Learning pupil platform

This update, alongside looking great, has also allowed us to provide increasingly accurate progress and enjoyment data.

At the heart of the way we approach diagnostic assessment are a few key tenets which you can follow:

Assessment shouldn’t eat in to actual learning time: little and often is the best approach
• Pre and Post testing is crucial to understanding whether or not your teaching or intervention has worked
Mindset is important, don’t forget to factor in enjoyment and engagement
Tailor your teaching to the findings of your assessment, great assessment is only as good as the teaching that follows from it

An example question during a pupil’s diagnostic assessment ‘Mission Zero’ on the Third Space Platform - check out their space crystals!
An example question during a pupil’s diagnostic assessment ‘Mission Zero’ on the Third Space Platform – check out their space crystals!

Learn more about getting your pupils on their own “Mission Zero” by visiting our schools page.

How We Do Diagnostic Assessment

On our new diagnostic programme, we’ve upgraded how we monitor progress made by each pupil.

Before a child starts the programme the teacher selects the topic area the student is to study. When the student logs in they are asked between 15-18 multiple choice questions.

These questions are designed to locate pupils’ working level on the first 3-6 sub-topics within the topic area the teacher selected.

This allows us to tailor our lessons towards the needs of that exact child. For the teacher, this means less time selecting lessons and for the pupil it means learning where it is needed most!

An example of how our pre-session diagnostic assessment identifies the gaps to be addressed during a pupil’s Third Space Learning sessions
An example of how our pre-session diagnostic assessment identifies the gaps to be addressed during a pupil’s Third Space Learning sessions

The pupils also sit between four to six questions from our question bank at the end of their 1-to-1 session. This is how we implement quick, low stakes assessment that helps us inform what progress is looking like for that pupil.

This new way of working is actually so successful that we have integrated continuous assessment into our new SATs programme to measure the progress of pupils!

Updated Training For Our Maths Specialists

Alongside improving our programme, we have developed the CPD and guidance given to our team of Maths expert tutors.

On our platform, tutors can now access an updated “notes” feature. The notes provided are pedagogical guidance for our specialists to prepare before, and guide during, the sessions they provide.

In training tutors to use this guidance, we are consolidating our roots in Mastery-based teaching even further. Tutors can more frequently encourage pupils to connect their knowledge, ask open-ended questions and extend their problem solving ability.

To assist Third Space tutors in providing the very best lessons, we have also developed our CPD provision. The on-boarding process of tutors has been streamlined by developing an online Initial Training course.

In short, this means we have incorporated new monthly tutor tests into our tutor assessment plan. This enables us to gain a deeper insight to our tutor body and where there is opportunity for development.

This is just another step to ensuring that we are training the very best Maths tutors in the world!

New Maths Hub Resources and CPD

As more and more schools come to us looking to support all pupils across all years, we’re expanding our Maths Hub to help.

We’ve now increased the range and number of resources we’re able to provide more for schools using our 1-to-1 and schools that aren’t.

Schools using our interventions now have access to:

6 new SATs Reasoning Papers
2 new SATs Arithmetic Papers
80 bitesize SATs question videos for pupils
SATs Masterclass CPD videos
Maths Masterclass CPD videos
60 Revision Lesson Plans
40 Diagnostic quizzes
Topical 365 – a daily reasoning question to try in class
18 weeks of Fluent in Five daily arithmetic practice
Over 100 bitesize CPD videos on key Maths topics

Plus hundreds more classroom resources, such as “worksheets” and intervention aids.

However, many of those resources are also available even if your school is not yet using our 1-to-1 tutors. So there’s plenty of free resources for everyone in our online Maths Hub which you can access here.

A sneak preview of our new SATs in Minutes videos available to schools using our 1-to-1 intervention

Want to access more videos like these? Click this link to see how our video library, SATs resources and 1-to-1 intervention can support your school.

All these new resources have been developed by our teacher team after speaking with teachers to find out what they needed most.  For instance, the CPD videos exist to help teachers and SLT who simply can’t afford to cover the cost of away days and cover teaching all at once.

Our Fluent in Five Maths Resource was created after teachers told us of a real for a decent  arithmetic tool to help all pupils become fluent, not just Year 6!

An example resource on the Third Space Learning Maths Hub: daily arithmetic practice for Year 3
An example resource on the Third Space Learning Maths Hub: daily arithmetic practice for Year 3
So What’s Next?

Ultimately, it has been a very busy year for us. Almost as busy as we expect yours will have been!

Looking back on the year, we’re proud to say we’ve worked extremely hard to tailor our provision to the needs of budget strapped schools, from our new cost-effective CPD to perfecting our intervention to maximise and make clear impact made.

However, we’re not done yet! The road to ensuring all pupils have access to great Maths teaching, regardless of background, is a long one. So watch this space to see what we develop in 2018 to help schools across the UK!

Plus, to learn more about how we can supercharge Maths progress in your school, visit our schools page now.

David Leighton , Content Team , Third Space Learning

A former secondary teacher, David keeps a weather eye on the educational horizon. He's responsible for making sure our blog posts and Maths resources reach teachers far & wide.