If, like so many parents, you are keen to help your child with their maths at home, but you are unsure where to start, what to cover and how to make sure you are teaching it the same way as in school, then have a read of this review of Number Stacks*.
Number Stacks, using it’s clever combination of online video tutorials and physical pack of resources, ensures that all parents, regardless of teaching or maths experience, can successfully support their child’s primary school maths learning at home.
We’ve been trying it out this week and think it’s absolutely brilliant.
How does it work?
Once you’ve purchased your Number Stacks kit and online membership, you receive a kit through the post and log in information online.
The kit includes various resources such as stackable counters, number frames, wipe clean cards, number cards etc. (depending on which of the two kits you choose)
Number Stacks provide easy to understand guidance of which key maths skills children need to learn in which year group of primary school. So you can choose the key skill you want to start at, watch the video tutorial of how to complete the activity together with your child and then have a go at the activity using the resources in your pack.
If you’re unsure where to start, there’s quick initial assessments that can be completed on screen or printed off, so you can gauge where your child is up to.
Find out more about Number Stacks and see examples of videos and activities on their Product Information Page here.
What did we like about it?
- Enjoyable– As those that read this blog regularly will know, I’m a huge believer in the importance of children enjoying learning and Number Stacks is great fun! In fact I’m pretty sure my own children view this resource as a toy and haven’t quite realised they are even learning when using it! Number Stacks use a clever mix of videos and hands on learning. We found the children loved watching the short video clips together to learn what to do and had great fun replicating it themselves with the stackable counters, number frames and white board pens. The video clip instructions are very well explained…but also nice and snappy and short to keep a young child’s attention!
- Makes Learning Maths Logical!– Too often, I’ve taught children who say they don’t ‘get’ maths, they see maths as this abstract concept that doesn’t have any meaning, let alone any relevance to them. What’s particularly great about Number Stacks is it shows children, right from the beginning of their maths learning, how to understand maths and not just to learn it! Number Stacks helps them understand maths by providing children with opportunities to physically hold it in their hands and manipulate the numbers themselves. For example, understanding that ten can be represented as 10 ones or one 10.
- Develops a Range of Skills– It’s not just numeracy skills that can be developed using this resource. We found it a great opportunity to practice Fine Motor Skills (Find our more about Fine Motor Skills here), hand-eye-coordination, concentration, following instructions, memory skills and many more.
- Great Value- Personally, I think, Number Stacks is probably the best value, educational resource that we’ve reviewed on The SEN Resources Blog to date. It provides you and your family with resources to support your child’s maths throughout their whole time at primary school. As the Number Stacks website points out, you get everything you need for less than the price of the average cost of two private tuition lessons. We also discovered that they even provide FREE activities and games for children starting to learn about numbers on their Early Number Sense page here.
- Very well Organised– Working out what your child is currently learning at school in maths, what they will be learning next and how to support them, can feel a bit overwhelming. Number Stacks site, resources and videos are very well organised which really helps. They have split their activities and videos into key skills needed for each year group and put them in an easy to follow order. This means it’s easy and quick to work out which part matches to what your child is learning at school.
- Initial Assessments– These are a fantastic idea as they help you gauge where your child is up to and where to start. Children complete a few questions at the start of each unit, either on-screen or printed off, to see which key skill they are at. This allows you to check if there are any key skills they need to revisit and which video tutorial and activity you should be starting with.
- Created by a Head Teacher– Number Stacks has been created by a former Primary School Head Teacher who clearly has vast experience in supporting children with their maths understanding. This provides parents and teachers buying the resource with confidence that it is high quality and beneficial to their child’s learning.
- Great for Teachers – As a qualified teacher and former SENDCO, what struck me the most about this resource was how fantastic is would also be for in school. It could be an excellent use of pupil premium funds for example, to be used for intervention groups in primary school, helping to ‘fill in the gaps’ in children’s maths understanding and support their learning. Personally, I wish I’d have heard about it when I was a SENDCO in a secondary school as it would have been a brilliant resource for some of our maths intervention groups who were working at primary school level and needed extra support in order to access the KS3 curriculum. Number Stack’s page dedicated to Schools, providing further information about Number Stacks for Intervention groups or as a classroom resource can be found here.
- No Preparation Needed– What’s also great about Number Stacks from a teaching perspective is that there’s no preparation needed, all the resources are online and there in the bag, nicely organised and ready to use.
Find out more about Number Stacks on their website here.
*Please note we received sample resources for the purpose of this review and this post is sponsored. All words and opinions are our own.