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Introduction

The Numeracy Team works in primary, post-primary and special schools in Belfast. The team provide guidance and support for teachers on issues relating to numeracy. Most of the INSET courses provided by the team take place in Mountcollyer Centre in the Numeracy Resource Centre.

The main focus of the team’s work at present is in the implementation of the Numeracy Strategy.

The numeracy strategy was initiated in 1998 with the aim of improving standards in mathematics and increasing pupils’ interest and confidence in numeracy. Each participating school follows a similar 3-year schedule.

The strategy has 3 main strands:

1. Leadership and management
Schools have worked on improving the way in which numeracy is planned for and co-ordinated throughout the school. There has been an emphasis placed on devising whole school numeracy policies, on action planning and on promoting numeracy across the school curriculum. The numeracy team has provided training and support for numeracy co-ordinators and heads of department.

2. Learning and teaching
The main focus of the strategy has been placed upon renewing approaches to the teaching and learning of mathematics. Courses on effective teaching and learning, learning styles, promotion of generic learning skills and lesson structure have been provided for all teachers of mathematics.

3. Use of ICT in mathematics
All numeracy training has incorporated elements of ICT where appropriate; including the use of ICT in the management of numeracy and its use in the enhancement of teaching and learning.

Courses and school-based support are provided in the use of:

- ICT in primary numeracy and ICT in post-primary mathematics/numeracy

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