We are looking for schools to take up a FREE trial of the Bar Logik software as part of this workgroup.
South Yorkshire Maths Hub is looking for teachers of key stage 2 and key stage 3 to join others across the country in delivering lessons based on some of the principles outlined below. This is a classroom scoping research project aimed at measuring the effectiveness of this strategy and associated resources. Schools do not have to use the BarLogik resource to take part as SYMH is looking for schools to deliver the teaching with and without the benefit of this practice app.
How does my school benefit from this?
Participating schools will be given resources to deliver a series of lessons aimed at developing pupils' ability to access and succesfully complete worded problems.
Schools will be encouraged to try out these and similar lessons to explore the use of bar models in problem solving and invited to trial the Bar Logik practice app with some or all of their students.
Non-participating schools will be able to access the resulting resources and exemplar materials produced by the work group via this website and IRIS Connect.
Below are the answers to some FAQs and some important information about accessing the preliminary materials.
What is the cost of the workgroup?:
The cost for engagement in this workgroup is FREE
Can I choose which classes to involve?:
Yes you can select which and as many or as few classes as you feel appropriate for your school.
The age groups to which this is appropriate is up to schools to decide but we suggest Y3 to Y8 are the most likely.
How many lessons will this involve?:
This depends on the classes you choose but we suggest no less than 4 lessons to around 10.
Schools can decide how often they want the lessons to occur but the proposal will be 1 per week for a set period of time.
Do I have to use the BarLogik app?:
No this is up to schools.
We are interested in measuring the impact of BarLogik so we would like some schools to use BarLogik and some not to as a control.
What is the cost of the Barlogik app?:
The price quoted on the Studysmart webpage is £100 + VAT. However South Yorkshire schools have a 25% discount.
Schools can claim a free licence for 2016/7
Can I have a look at the materials before deciding?:
YES The materials for this will be accessed through IRIS Connect which I know many of you are taking up the offer of a FREE content licencefor your school.
We realise this will may take some time to organise, so to enable schools to access the BarLogik group and see the resources and support materials created so far you can use the temporary login to access a shared account.
You will need to select the GROUPS tab on the top menu bar and then BARLOGIK
How can I engage with this workgroup?:
Introduction to the Bar Modelling workgroup
Bar modelling is a strategy increasingly being used by teachers to help pupils visualise the calculations they are addressing in their studies so that the bar model (pictorial) sits alongside the number sentence or equation (abstract).
Used in many “mastery” systems this pictorial representation can be facilitated to help pupils develop and expand their conceptual understanding of arithmetic, but can also be used to translate word problems into a diagrammatic format. This allows pupils to see more clearly the route through a multi-step question.
Bar modelling gives pupils a method of representing calculations pictorially, helping them gain an understanding of the underlying principles rather than just learning a series of algorithmic procedures.
BarLogik is a framework of increasingly sophisticated problems that provide teachers with a progression of reasoning development that can be addressed in the classroom and practiced at home.
BarLogik provides a series of exercises in both printable worksheet and web-app format. These are designed to help pupils understand and apply the principles of bar modelling in a series of varying puzzles. The suggested teacher strategy can be used to introduce an aspect of reasoning or pupils can be challenged independently to use their own logic.
Why is BarLogik useful?
With the increasing use of bar modelling as a method of conceptualising arithmetic in Primary and Secondary maths, the need for resources to aid teachers in implementing this technique has also increased, a need which BarLogik aims to address.
BarLogik is divided into a series of stages, providing a structure designed to support teachers in guiding their pupils’ development. These stages’ intuitive design and the simplicity of the early stages can also help motivate learners to tackle more advanced situations and techniques as they progress.
These levels/stages can be either explored in the classroom in connection with normal curriculum progression, or used to challenge pupils out of class through independent puzzle activities. This could be particularly useful for older pupils who have not met bar models previously - tackling the earlier stages is a way for them to become familiar with bar modelling without taking up lesson time.
The printable resources allow for practice within class or as homework, whilst the app adds an element of motivational challenge that pupils can both practice their fluency at one level whilst tackling the logic of a more advanced stage.
How do the offline resources and web-app work?
The BarLogik strategy is complemented by paper-based resources and digital exercises. The former can be used to introduce bar modelling to pupils, integrate BarLogik into their curriculum and support teachers in other classroom activities. Examples of suggested activities are available for teachers in the supporting materials. To use the online app, only a modern browser and a computer is required.
The BarLogik app enables pupils to practice and develop their newfound skills outside the classroom and under timed conditions, with the aim of providing increasing proficiency and motivation as challenge scales with ability. This also has the advantage of allowing parents the opportunity to join their children on the learning journey and understand this new learning methodology themselves.
The online app will in time give teachers the opportunity to easily generate more exercise sheets based on their specific needs, combining any number of randomised questions from any of the stages. This is particularly useful if you need more than the different exercise sheets currently provided on TES resource page or if you would like to generate questions with specific number intervals.
How does BarLogik fit into my curriculum?
At all ages the development of reasoning is crucial and yet often overlooked. BarLogik allows teachers to address this aspect. Teachers can choose to use the resources whilst focusing on supporting arithmetic skills or use them in a problem solving scenario helping children to use and apply these skills.
Foundation Stage & Key Stage 1
In early years and the start of KS1 teachers would be expected to make much greater use of manipulatives. We strongly advise the use of BarLogik only once the bar model has been introduced alongside other pictorial representations such as the number line.
Once the pupils have an understanding of the basic model and have mastered the first principles of addition and subtraction they can tackle the BarLogik stages.
Key Stage 1 pupils with bar model experience & Key Stage 2
By now pupils will either have been already introduced to the bar model strategy or will be mature enough to tackle stage 1 without prior experience. Teachers are encouraged to use a real life example familiar to the children in words alongside a bar model diagram and an appropriate number sentence.
Pupils could be asked to spot the links between these three representations and discuss the process they would use to find the missing value. Teachers are encouraged to ask the children to write a new calculation they could use to find the answer.
Finally the students should be able to spot the connection between their new calculation and the bar model and explain and justify how they arrived at this.
This process could then be repeated with a new problem and at an appropriate time teachers should bring in each variation of that stage’s problem so children have experienced them all before they start to practice.
Teachers are encouraged to mix the procedural practice using the worksheets with worded problems and remember the bar model is a tool for students to use not an end itself.
Key Stage 3
Older students can be introduced to BarLogik as above but it is more likely that the early stages can be given to the pupils as a series of puzzles to tackle themselves independently followed by a group discussion to summarise what they have discovered by working through them.
Teachers will then be able to quickly decide which stage is the most appropriate for the class to focus on together.
The process of comparing worded problems, models and calculations is still appropriate for older students with perhaps a greater emphasis of generalisation and introduction of algebraic terms.