I15 - Numicon

Transforming the teaching of mathematics.

Includes FREE Shapes Pack by post.

Do you need to know more about the Oxford University Press Numicon Mathematics Programme, its pedagogy, practices and suite of superbly structured materials and apparatus, with a view to transforming the way your children come to experience, to know and to understand key mathematical ideas and concepts?
If yes, then our Numicon online course is perfect for you! 
Schools are realising now that Numicon should be part of their strategy for better achieving a broad range of the expected learning outcomes of the primary school mathematics curriculum. 
Numicon as you will discover, focuses on 'doing' maths, working in pairs or groups of 3/4, working with structured materials, chatting mathematically, reasoning, problem solving and generalising. In essence, it is a highly evolved, finely structured, superbly sequenced and evidence based programme. It tackles the recurring problem of children simply listening and working quietly on individual tasks without apparatus. Mathematics needs to be active and social. Numicon is both. The Numicon approach is multi-sensory, uses objects and has a focus on  action,  imagery  and  conversation, in other words a focus on children physically doing maths.
The programme of  1,000+ activities, using Numicon shapes and materials, help children understand number relationships, spot patterns and make generalisations.
As the course reveals and details, there are 3 key aspects that permeate Number, Pattern, Calculating, Geometry, Measurements and statistics:
The first is ACTION: giving the children the ability to ‘handle’ numbers using the Numicon shapes. This ‘action maths’ approach underpins good maths teaching, investigations leading to observations and better understanding.
The second is CONVERSATION: Numicon activities encourage children to use appropriate language and to communicate mathematically. The Numicon materials become ‘communication mediators’ i.e. the children chat and discuss as they use and apply the materials, overlaying the materials with mathematical language. The child’s thinking is revealed in this conversation, and you the teacher can listen in on the side and make your own inferences / deductions about the child and the mathematics at hand.
The third is IMAGERY: structured imagery becomes embedded in a child’s memory, making calculation without counting possible. The Numicon shapes and rods help teachers and children to communicate their ideas. Children are encouraged to work together on activities which emphasise applying understanding to solve problems. Numicon enables children to really ‘see’ how numbers and the number system work. The Numicon teaching approach helps children communicate their mathematical thinking to teachers. This in turn helps teachers to ‘see’ pupils' understanding. The concept of 'doing' maths is the key to the Numicon programme.
If these ideas are chiming with how you think mathematics should be taught, then enrol with us today and discover why schools and teachers are turning to and embracing Numicon as a key approach to their teaching of mathematics.
We look forward to your company, your contributions and your questions.
NOTE: all participants will receive a set of the ten Numicon plastic shapes. 
The on-line format of the course enables you to study when and where you want to learn. Content is divided into 5 modules which you can complete in any order at any time.
Participants are encouraged to interact with one another using the communication tools (forum, chat, e-mail) provided by the CPD College learning system. Active facilitation throughout the course provides expert interaction, guidance and feedback for all participants. Assignments and questions which call for critical reflection, self-analysis and a reasoned response punctuate this highly interactive web based course.
On completion of this course each participant can download their CPD record and Certificate of completion. The Certificate of completion demonstrates your achievement in completing this professional development course.
This course is only available to participants in Ireland.

Learning outcomes

We have envisaged and planned the following learning outcomes for teachers who take our course on the teaching of mathematics with Numicon. Teachers will acquire a comprehensive working knowledge of how the unique materials that comprise Numicon, can be used to explore and develop a broad range of key mathematical concepts with their children
  • Teachers will revise, refresh and utilise the key pedagogical approaches to the teaching of mathematics.
  • Teachers will replicate the Numicon techniques and approaches as exemplified throughout the course in their own mathematics teaching
  • Teachers will know the teaching points that govern good mathematics lessons & investigations and replicate same consistently in their own teaching
  • Teachers will know of the availability of the range of Numicon resources that can be acquired and assembled over time to better support mathematics teaching
  • Teachers will better devise, resource and deliver mathematics lessons that are hands-on and full of potential & possibility for discussion and conversation
  • Teachers will utilise assessment techniques to regularly evaluate and benchmark progress in mathematics and see to fill in gaps in childrens’ knowledge & skill sets where evident.


01 - We introduce teachers to the pedagogy that underpins best practice mathematical teaching, with problem solving, reasoning, action, imagery and conversation at its heart, where the highly structured, yet versatile Numicon materials become strong ‘communication mediators’. We introduce the Numicon shapes, which have been designed for children to manipulate, to observe & notice, and to explore patterns when using them, all overlaid with lots of conversation.
We explore the activities of the ‘Firm Foundations Kit’ and outline & detail nine key mathematical ideas: pattern, order, comparison, counting numbers, moving beyond counting, place value, addition, subtraction and shape.
02 - Here we look at the two arithmetic operations of addition & subtraction, developing key mathematical ideas and techniques in relation to how best to teach children:
  • Structures (i.e. the forms in which addition and subtraction occur)
  • Methods (how to do the calculations), and
  • Properties (characteristics and relationships to each other) for each operation
We detail two specific approaches to assessment: prior and ongoing/summative assessment.
03 - In this module we present and itemise a suite of key mathematical ideas and detail activities that can be used to explore and develop each key idea with children. 
The key ideas coalesce around three keys areas:
  • Using pattern
  • Numbers and the Number System
  • Calculating
……to include compression, equivalence, properties of the four rules, partitioning, odd & even patterns etc. etc.
04 - In this module we set out and detail 30 structured activity groups, which are all supported by clear illustrations, in order to progress and enhance teacher knowledge & skill, in so far that as each will be able to: 
  • Name the key mathematical idea being developed,
  • Describe the educational context for the particular activity
  • Itemise & detail the learning opportunities presented by the activity
  • Evaluate the assessment opportunities within the activity i.e. knowing what to look and listen for
05 - In this module we outline a range of really useful strategies that can be deployed to assist pupils in overcoming barriers to mathematical learning and attainment e.g. 
  • Difficulties with numerosity
  • Difficulties with the language of mathematics
  • Difficulties with sequencing
  • Difficulties with motoric aspects of counting etc. 
We also set out and detail the Numicon approach to measures, statistics and geometry.
Teachers will engage with the processes and tools of school self evaluation with a view to putting in place a self improvement plan.


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Latest News

Enrolments are still open for our Autumn/ WInter courses 2017/ 2018.

Enrolments have now closed for summer 2017.

Contact Us

Ireland - +353 (0)53-9230344 or +353 (0)53-9238909
UK - +44 (0)20 8144 0423
CPD College, Enniscorthy Enterprise & Tech. Centre,
Milehouse Road, Enniscorthy, Co. Wexford, Ireland