Mathematics in the National Curriculum 1989
The National Curriculum for Mathematics was introduced into England, Wales and Northern Ireland as a nationwide curriculum for primary and secondary state schools following the Education Reform Act 1988. The purpose of the National Curriculum was to standardise the content taught across schools in order to raise standards of attainment in mathematics.
The statutory orders set out the content of mathematics to be taught by grouping it into what were termed Attainment Targets (AT), of which there were 14. Each AT was divided into 10 levels, each level having Statements of Attainment (SoA). An example (non statutory) was given in order to clarify the demand of the SoAs.
ATs 1-8 were clustered together and detailed the knowledge, skills, understanding and use of number, algebra and measures. A significant inclusion in the ATs were AT1 and AT9 which were both concerned with using and applying mathematics in practical tasks, in real life problems and to investigate within mathematics itself.
AT1: Using and applying mathematics
AT2: Number (number notation)
AT3: Number (operations)
AT4: Number (estimation)
AT5: Number/algebra (pattern)
AT6: Algebra (functions)
AT7: Algebra (graphical representations)
ATs 9-14, covered the knowledge, skills, understanding and use of shape and space and data handling.
AT9: Using and applying mathematics
AT10: Shape and space (2-D and 3-D)
AT11: Shape and space (location and transformation)
AT12: Handling data (collect and process)
AT13: Handling data (represent and interpret)
AT14: Handling data (probability)
AT 7, which was not included in the PoS for Key Stage One covered algebra from level four, therefore outside the scope of Key Stage One. Probability (AT14) did however start in Key Stage One.
Programmes of Study were given for each level in terms of the ATs and relevant SoAs. The ATs were grouped together for this purpose into Using and applying mathematics, Number, Algebra, Measures, Shape and space, Handling data.
The ATs and PoS specified the levels applicable to each of the Key Stages for the majority of the pupils. The levels were deemed appropriate to the different abilities and maturities of the pupils being taught. They were:
First Key Stage - Attainment targets 1-6 and 8-14; levels 1-3
Second Key Stage - Attainment targets 1-14; levels 2-6
Third Key Stage - Attainment targets 1-14; levels 3-8
Fourth Key Stage - Attainment targets 1-14; levels 4-10
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