Latest success stories from Renaissance Learning

Transforming Maths Education: Lucan Community National School’s Success with Star Maths and Freckle

Lucan Community National School, Dublin

Deputy Principal at Lucan CNS, Paul O’Callaghan, spoke to us about how implementing Star Maths and Freckle has transformed the school’s approach to maths.

 

“Teachers feel more comfortable and have the data to make informed decisions about pupil needs and in turn to facilitate targeted interventions. The wide range of reports are used by our maths team to decide where support can be best utilised across the school.”

Addressing Specific Challenges

Paul explains that prior to using Star Maths and Freckle the school had been using other maths programmes which didn’t provide the detailed information they needed to measure pupil attainment and progress. The school was looking for a more robust platform for this specific purpose and has additionally found that Star Maths provides clear targets which effectively pinpoint those pupils needing extra support. The school now has a more focused approach to addressing individual pupil needs, especially for those who have difficulty with maths.

Paul says, “In maths it’s vital that children gain a strong understanding in foundational skills before they move on to learn about other related topics. It’s sometimes necessary to jump back to certain basic topics with an older pupil. With the data from Star, teachers feel more confident doing this as they have the data to back up the decision.”

“Another advantage of using Star Maths is the way it integrates with Freckle which in turn links in directly to the Zone of Proximal Development meaning that pupils are more motivated to solve problems as they are individualised and at a targeted, comfortable level for them.”

 

“Freckle has helped these pupils who are more confident in maths to continue to improve but not to the detriment of those who struggle.”

Engaging pupils

Freckle has also had a strong impact on the top-performing pupils at Lucan CNS. Paul explains, “It can be difficult to differentiate for all learners in the classroom, and I think teachers naturally tend to focus on supporting the weaker pupils and those in the middle as much as possible which means there might not be as much time for those top attainers. Freckle has helped these pupils who are more confident in maths to continue to improve but not to the detriment of those who struggle. With Freckle, pupils don’t know what level other pupils are working on. That’s what works so well.”

Data Insights

Paul praises the strength of the data from Star Maths and Freckle. He says, “Teachers feel more comfortable and have the data to make informed decisions about pupil needs and in turn to facilitate targeted interventions. The wide range of reports are used by our maths team to decide where support can be best utilised across the school. Relevant reports can also be shared with inspectors, parents and even pupils themselves.”

Reducing workload

Paul says, “My colleagues love Star Maths as it saves them time by finding appropriate targets and challenges for all pupils, relating to each area of the curriculum. The time it saves allows staff to have more time for teaching, and having targeted challenges that pupils can realistically achieve helps them want to improve and continuously learn. Would I recommend Star Maths and Freckle? Absolutely!”

 

Discover how your school can enhance its numeracy development strategy by implementing Star Maths assessment and Freckle’s adaptive maths practice tasks.

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