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National Curriculum Levels to August 2014

The national curriculum has now changed (except for Years 2 and 6).

Previously, the educational system was managed by a series of national curriculum levels. There were 8 main levels, then they were followed by the letters a, b or c. As Years 2 and 6 will still be following this curriculum, it is important to understand what the letters mean.

c - this is to show that a child has only just started to work at this level, so has yet to grasp all of the concepts contained within that level
b - this means that a child is working comfortably within the level
a - this indicates that a child has reached the top of the level and is ready to move on to the next level

The next question is how to know when a child is working at the correct level. Often, parents know their child's levels but they don't know whether this means they are average, above average or below average. This was part of the reason for bringing about a new curriculum.

The basic rules in the old Key Stage 2 National Curriculum Levels were:

By the end of Year 2 - A child should be at a level 2 in order to be in the average band
By the end of Year 3 - A child should be working somewhere between level 2a and 3b in order to be in the average band
By the end of Year 4 - A child should be working at a level 3 in order to be in the average band
By the end of Year 5 - A child should be somewhere between level 3b and 4c in order to be average
By the end of Year 6 - A child should be working at level 4 in order to be in the average band
A child who gets a level 7 at the end of Year 9 is often projected to get a Grade C in their GCSEs, but of course this will vary.

How many levels should a child be progressing by each year? The target set was to go up a whole level every 2 years, so each year your child should have been progressing by 1.5 sublevels.

When it comes to maths, the national curriculum was separated into different teaching attainments:

Attainment 2: This is the section called Number & Algebra, which covers operations and problem solving
Attainment 3: This section is Shape, Space and Measure, which covers topics such as area, volume and time
Attainment 4: This section starts at Key Stage 2 and is called Handling Data. It includes graphs and charts

This is still the case in the current curriculum - mathematics is split into various elements. However, it is now split down a little further as follows:

Number - Number and Place Value
Number - Addition and Subtraction
Number - Multiplication and Division
Number - Fractions (this includes Decimals from Year 4 and Percentages from Year 6)
Geometry - Properties of Shapes
Geometry - Position and Direction
Statistics (this is now from Year 2 rather than from Key Stage 2)
Ratio and Proportion (from Year 6)
Algebra (from Year 6)

Progress And Advance In Maths Revision & Practice for Ages 11 too 13

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