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1st Class @ Number

What is 1st Class Number?

First class at number is a ‘light touch’ mathematics intervention, which was created by Edge Hill University.

The intervention is delivered by a trained teaching assistant to a group of up to 4 children outside the classroom as a supplement to their daily maths lesson.

How does it work?

1st Class @ Number 1

Children have 24 lessons in about eight weeks, organised into 4 topics:

1. All About Number

2. Exploring Place Value

3. Calculation 1

4. Calculation 2

1st Class @ Number 2

Children have 30 lessons in about ten weeks, organised into 5 topics:

1. All About Number

2. Exploring Place Value

3. Addition and Subtraction 1

4. Adding and Subtracting 2

5. Towards Multiplication and Division


The topics focus on key aspects of number drawing on research into the maths that causes the most difficulties for children.

The intervention has a post office theme;  children use letters, postcards, parcels and house numbers to support their learning.

At the end of the sessions children sometimes take a post card away with them, either one the teaching assistant has written or one they write for themselves which they then share with their class teacher.  This gives them a prompt to discuss their progress and achievements.

What are it’s aims? 

1st Class @ Number aims to raise the attainment of children who have moderate difficulties with mathematics from approximately level 1C towards level 2 (for 1st Class @ Number 1) and from Level 2C towards 3 (for 1st Class @ Number 2). It aims to build children’s confidence in mathematics as well as challenging them, and seeing them succeed while having fun.

Other information

The intervention has 4 or 5 topics and within each there are 5 different lessons and an additional lesson known as setting the scene, where an assessment is made of what the children already know and what they need help with. In each topic there is an activity known as special delivery which is an activity for children to take home and share with parents / carers.