PEDAGOGY

# Tips for the best year 7 maths catch-up sessions

![alt text](/filestore/BlogImage/ebf4a43b-c414-42db-b532-601be449944f/f5ccd8b2-4629-4ec4-aa33-52e4378a20e7Tipsforthebestyear7boostersessions.jpg "Tips for the best year 7 maths catch-up sessions")
Year 7 catch-up session resources can be difficult to find. If a student hasn’t met expected standard at year 6, it is unlikely that they will be able to access the curriculum at secondary level. For some, the decision to take students out of mainstream lessons for catch ups is a difficult one, but re-visiting the basics can make all the difference.
We spoke to ex-SATs examiner and primary teacher, Darryl Keane and primary maths teaching specialist, Francesca Hartwell, about a great way to approach common weaknesses and the best year 7 catch-up session resources available free through Learning by Questions.
### Find the gaps in maths
Carrying out a year 7 baseline can be really helpful to find out where the gaps are in relation to the secondary maths curriculum. You can use a series of [Baseline Question Sets from Learning by Questions designed specifically to indicate gaps in year 7.](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/assessment?years=7&keywords=baseline)
However, be warned. Commonly, gaps actually stem back to year 3 and 4 curriculum objectives. You can also use the Learning by Questions [End of Year Review Question Sets for years 3 and 4](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/assessment?years=3,4), which might give you a clearer idea of what’s missing.
It is likely that many, if not all, students that have not reached the expected standard at the end of primary school will have gaps in at least one of the following areas.
### Common gaps in year 7 mathematical knowledge
#### 1. Times tables and number bonds
This will come as no shock to any teacher. Times tables are the most common root of issues in maths for most children (and adults!). If a child has not mastered quick recall of times tables, it is going to have left them behind a long time ago. The [Learning by Questions times table practise Question Sets](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/multiplication-and-division?keywords=practise%20times%20table) are a great way to build up knowledge of times tables.
Number bonds are taught in very early primary education, but it is still possible for children to fall through the net. A fluent understanding of number bonds is essential in the successful education of the Singapore approach in maths, a popular approach in schools across the country. Learning by Questions has some [resources aimed at building skills in number bonds ](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/addition-and-subtraction?keywords=number%20bond)that can be used to help those students with a weakness in this area.
#### 2. Place value
A cornerstone of mathematical understanding that often needs to be reinforced, especially with decimal place value and the concept of negative numbers. Children often confuse the value of digits in numbers, leading to potential problems in many areas of the KS3 curriculum. Learning by Questions has a huge number of carefully scaffolded [place value Question Sets](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/place-value?keywords=place%20value) supporting the development of this key understanding.
#### 3. Fractions and multiplicative relationships
Students with weaknesses in fractions may be able to follow a process and confidently tell you which part is the numerator or denominator, but they may have no understanding of the actual concept of fractions - something first introduced in years 1 and 2. Concrete and pictorial representation helps them to deepen their understanding of the concept of fractions. Pictorial representations of fractions can be found in the[ fractions Question Sets](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/fractions) from Learning by Questions, as well as feedback that deals with common misconceptions.
Students that struggle to recognise and use multiplicative relationships are likely to face difficulties in many areas of the KS3 curriculum, such as in ratios, scaling and proportional calculations. Learning by Questions utilises pictorial materials throughout our Question Sets to help children develop this fundamental understanding, for example in our [ratio and proportion Question Sets](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics/ratio-and-proportion?keywords=ratio%20and%20proportion).
### Go back to problem solving
The students that haven’t met expectations in year 6 SATs are likely to struggle with problem-solving questions, even if they appear to be fluent with processes. Because many problem-solving questions are often used as extension activities, these students may have had very little exposure to multi-step problems. Learning by Questions’ [maths mastery resources](https://www.lbq.org/search/mathematics) ensure pupils get that all-important chance to regularly apply their skills to solve real-life problems.
If you have extra funding for your students who struggle in maths, English and science, Learning by Questions has over 50,000 curriculum-aligned questions with immediate and individualised feedback to help students make rapid progress. But don’t take our word for it! You can [register for a free account with Learning by Questions here](http://www.lbq.org/register), and access all [our maths resources](https://www.lbq.org/Search/Mathematics) for free.