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**What is it?**

There is little doubt (at least in my mind anyway!) that developing student’s fluency in mental calculations is absolutely crucial for their mathematical development. If students are using valuable working memory capacity dealing with times tables or simple subtractions then they have little chance of success when it comes to more complex problems. Hence, any resource that allows students to practise these key skills, but in an engaging way, is always going to go down a storm with me. And that is exactly what this collection of wonderful numeracy races do. It is such a simple idea – students must complete the circuit around the track as quickly as possible, answering questions on each of the four operations or rounding. The benefits of this could be immense!

**How can it be used?**

I think the key to something like this is consistency. If such activities are used a couple of times and then forgotten about, they tend to have very little impact. However, if this becomes a regular part of your daily or weekly routine, then both you and your students will see the long term benefits. Personally I would give this printed sheet out at the start of each lesson, or maybe do this every Monday and have other forms of key numeracy practice on the remaining days of the week. My only plea to the author (and I know I am being very cheeky here!) is to use their Excel wizardry to enable the answers to automatically generate. Then we might well have one of the best resources I have ever seen.

Thanks so much for sharing

Craig Barton

Download: **Numeracy Races**

View the **author’s other resources**