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Tim Jackson
Maths Coordinator

“It’s given our pupils more confidence to speak up in class”

Pangbourne Primary School

location
Location: Reading, UK
school
School size: 220 pupils
class
Intervention Type: KS2 SATs & Y5 Transition
pupils
Intervention Pupil Type: Low confidence PP pupils

After several recommendations, we wanted to give Third Space a go to provide more targeted support to our Pupil Premium children

Our Year 6 teacher had experience of Third Space from a previous school and recommended it very highly so we wanted to try it to help our Pupil Premium low achievers. They’re a bit quieter and won’t always ask for help so we liked the idea that we could use the Pupil Premium funding to connect them with their own personal maths tutors who could focus entirely on them for 45 minutes each week; it really was a good use of their money.

Set up was quick and easy and the children liked the idea of being on computers

There was very little work required to set it up and we were impressed with the fact that the headsets were sent out to us. When we told the children they’d get a headset and be able to speak to it I think they were a little bit nervous to start with because they’re quite shy, but in general they really liked the idea of using the computer and soon felt very comfortable speaking with their tutors.

Third Space meant we could provide more attention than we can in class

It’s the chance for them to talk to someone without having to worry about all the ‘clever’ ones putting their hand up first or them making a mistake and looking ‘stupid’ in front of the class. That’s a massive benefit. But then they also have the opportunity to get that instant feedback. If they do get a question wrong, the tutor is there to explain why they got it wrong and talk through what they can do to get to the correct answer. It’s something we try to do in class, we walk around and give feedback but you can’t do that on the same level for 30 kids. For these type of children who don’t often talk about maths, having one person to ask them a question and being able to answer it is really useful.

We were really pleased with the impact and that the fact we’d started a little earlier

For our Year 6 pupils we were so pleased with the progress they made before SATs. One girl in particular who’d only join the school later on in the year certainly wasn’t on track to get expected in maths but ended up getting there which was great. As a school we did well in SATs and, considering maths traditionally hasn’t been the strongest of the three, we were really pleased! With our Year 5 pupils it’s clear to see their confidence has improved massively. It’s a really helpful step heading into year 6 because now it means they have that confidence to go and try it, maybe put their hands up and talk about maths which at the start of year 6 is very valuable.  We’ve certainly agreed it’s a good thing this is happening in year 5 as by year 6 it’s almost too late.

“The opportunity to sit and talk to someone is so valuable. Particularly for those kids who are quite shy in class and don’t want to put their hand up because they’re scared of getting it wrong. It’s someone interested in them, which of course as teachers we are but we don’t have that kind of time to sit with them all.”