Running Count on Us in School

Documents and practice ideas for running Count on Us in your school.

Stage 2: In-school Practice

Count on Us Guides and Resources

The documents below are important for running the programme in your school.

  • Teacher Guide: detailed guidance on running the Count on Us Challenge in your school, including support on how to extend the activities to all Year 4 and 5 pupils. This has been uploaded as an interactive PDF with hyperlinked contents page.
  • Pupil Activity Book: this should be printed out and given to all pupils. It is full of practise activities for your pupils to do in class, in clubs or at home.
  • Bonus Points Task List: how to earn up to 30 points before the Heats – teacher tasks.
  • Action Plan: get started now and plan your programme in school with this action plan template (and completed example). This will help you plan how to move your pupils from getting started to getting good at the activities.
  • Activity Log: a template to help you keep note of Count on Us activity completed in your school and stay on track with the programme during the academic year. Use this form to record what you have done and ideas for what still needs to be done.

The Count on Us Challenge Activities: A Summary

Round 1: NEW! Pattern and problem-solving – a team activity                                        (Note: this is a revised round)
  • Dominoes – pupils create a number pattern to match the layout of a domino grid they are given.
  • Pentominoes – pupils combine pentomino pieces to match the task.
  • T-Shapes – pupils make the pictures shown using the 4 T-Shape pieces.

They will need to be very skilled at solving each of these under pressure in timed conditions.

Round 2: 24® Game – an individual activity
  • Using the 24® Game cards, pupils compete to find the answer 24. Successful schools will have used these in class, in clubs and at home. Pupils will need to be very quick at spotting number patterns and bonds.
Round 3: Codebreaking – a team activity
  • Teams crack the Caesar Shift codes to find a solution to a tricky problem. They will need to be very good at working together, allocating tasks and problem solving. This year, we will have a London / finance theme to this round.

Each of these activities is described in detail in the Teacher Guide which takes you from getting your pupils started to getting them ready for the Heats.

In-school Practice Ideas

The most effective schools set up clubs and involve other teachers, older pupils or teaching assistants/parents to support. Give your pupils ownership of the activities by setting up lots of practice opportunities for each of the activities. Some schools create a resource kit for each pupil in their maths club by copying the resource templates on to card.

As pupils use the 24® Game cards, shape/pattern and codebreaking ideas, they will become more confident, develop effective strategies and become fantastic problem solvers!

Here are some ideas, shared by teachers, for how to embed these activities in your school:

  1. Use a 24® Game/codebreaking activity as a 10-minute maths lesson starter
  2. Have a 24® Game ‘Card of the Day’ on the board, awarding points to the first individual/table team who can solve it each day
  3. Encipher messages for pupils throughout the school day – give instructions or learning objectives in code
  4. Set up a weekly Count on Us time to let pupils choose their next task from the Pupil Activity Book
  5. Send activities home to be done with siblings/parents/guardians/carers
  6. Plan a Maths Week where pupils can try activities and complete the week by running a tournament at the end of the week
  7. Invite parents in for a Parents vs Pupils tournament
  8. If you have a talented pupil who took part last year, let them support you in running a club and mentoring the new pupils