The key aims of the Hong Kong Maths Curriculum for Key Stages 1 & 2 make for interesting reading.
They key takeaway here is to note some of the keywords they use, including “creativity”, “communicate” and “lifelong”:
Stimulate the interest of pupils in the learning of mathematics;
Develop pupils’ understanding and acquisition of basic mathematical concepts and computational skills;
Develop pupils’ creativity, and their ability to think, communicate and solve problems;
Develop pupils’ number sense and spatial sense, and their ability to appreciate patterns and structures of number and shapes;
Enhance pupils’ lifelong learning abilities through basic mathematical knowledge.
Develop pupils’ creativity, and their ability to think, communicate and solve problems
Calling out this aim in particular, here at KeyStageMaths.com we believe that the UK is in need of developing further encouragement in the field of children’s ability to think and communicate in the field maths.
Only when a child has stood up at the whiteboard and explained how to multiply, divide and simplify fractions to another child can you believe that have understood fractions.
Furthermore, to be able to apply fractions mathematics to real world problems (and to explain them in plain English) is an essential skill which carries forward to Secondary School when pupils have to answer science based questions in long form English rather than only in numbers and symbols.