Omaths logo Nurturing maths awesomeness


HomeAbout usTeachers' guideParents' guideMaths wordsContact us

Quick start guide for parents

The learning routine

As near as possible, doing a maths activity at the same time each day helps minimise arguments. It should become an accepted part of the day like brushing teeth.

5 minutes a day is much much better than an hour once a week. We use an attention span estimation to set a target based on the stage they are working at. Some time between 10 and 30 minutes the child will get a notification that they've done enough for the day and they'll get a coin bonus. If they choose to, they can continue working, but they won't get a further bonus. You can edit target times (or number of questions) in your parent dashboard.

Do not worry overly if they keep returning to very basic activities that they know they can always get right. In the same way that a walk in the woods might involve balancing along a fallen tree and jumping between stepping stones, kids like to make it harder for themselves when they feel confident. You can suggest they click follow on to see what topics might be similar to thing they keep coming back to. It might take a long time for confidence to build up. Eventually we will remove mastered questions if they are using a log in.

The learning environment

The learning environment should be as free from distraction as possible.

Many children will tell you they learn best to music but studies show that they are mistaken. Quiet is best. Nevertheless, in our house, kids study to music. Pick your battles.

Finding and selecting work

Children can easily find topics to use their 0maths learning to bolster their school learning. Once they start doing the right type of questions 0maths may divert them to other activities if these will get them to their goal faster. For example, if they're struggling with the 7 times table, it may take them to clicking multiples of 7 or turning a 7 times table question into a sum of a 2 times table and a 5 times table.

They can find work in a few different ways:

  1. By clicking the large coloured buttons for the topic. For early stages this brings up a mostly visual menu of work. For later stages it is text based, with previews. Within the text menu the buttons have a black border if the skill is essential, rather than a topic necessary to help engender understanding of another skill. In the visual menus, a bike shows key topics, the bike has training wheels on questions designed to help with key topics and a unicycle shows the challenge topics.
  2. By searching for a topic (ie typing 'addition' into the search box)
  3. By saying a topic out loud. In most modern browsers clicking the (bottom right) speech bubble and saying 'addition' into the microphone will bring up the 'best' hit for addition.
  4. If the work to be tackled is the same as the last session, the 'last time' button can be used to take pupils directly to it.
  5. Double coins will show topics they struggled with last time, or topics that build on new knowledge.

Alternatively, pupils can click the Test me or Lucky dip buttons to allow 0maths to ask questions across the current year's work. Lucky dip is slightly more than lucky; the first topic is chosen at random but if they then press lucky dip again without answering any questions it will usually be assumed the student baulked at the first question and they will be shown prerequisite topics.

Once they have started to answer questions, 0maths will begin to build up a picture of which topics they have not mastered. It is important that pupils spend time eradicating their weaknesses as later topics will draw on these (eg calculating areas draws on multiplication knowledge, which in turn builds on addition).

Their weaknesses are remembered for their next visit. They can build ability gradually by making these tasks easier or explore prequisite topics. A topic by topic assessment is also available from the text topic menu under "check my..?", broken down into broad curriculum areas (ie number, addition & subtraction, multiplication & division, fractions and decimals, money, time and measurement, geometry, algebra, and statistics)

Assigning work

Work can be assigned intuitively from the parent log on screen.

Monitoring progress

In your child's eyes you are amazingly clever and infallible. They want you to feel the same way about them. For this reason, some children may not be pleased about the amount of data you have available so try to avid looking at the stats in front of them.

Creating a log in allows you to see a comprehensive range of pupil progress data.

You can see at a glance which questions they've been working on. If you click one of these question types, you can see how their times in answering questions compare to other students and target times.

Once enough (by default, normally 3) questions of a type have been answered without recourse to show me how, a wedge (quarter circle) may be awarded for that question type as follows


Overall progress is shown to pupils in a bronze, silver and gold pie chart by the topic heading. The blank portion of the pie chart illustrates the questions in the topic that have not been answered in large enough numbers, or have been answered with recourse to the show me how button. For the pie chart to cover the full 360 degrees, the pupil would need to have won 4 wedges (of any colour) for every question type in the topic.

Progress is associated with a year, so wedges will disappear when a pupil goes up a year.

Individual strengths and weaknesses are recorded. Students win awards for their strengths and their weaknesses are available as learning opportunities.

Adaptive Learning

Pupils can click easier or harder to adapt the difficulty level to their confidence and ability. Additionally, they can view follow on topics to see how their skill in a topic can be taken further. They can also choose to answer prerequisite (first know) topics to fill in any gaps in their learning.

Optionally, if show me is clicked twice on a question type, or three questions have been answered with corrections or at a speed much slower than the target time, the difficulty level will be reduced. If they are already on the easiest difficulty level, they will be taken to the prerequisite topics, as if they'd clicked first know.

Questions can optionally be removed (through the fall back to 'first know' if struggling option) if a pupil has not managed to answer a prerequisite question type (this is the default for "what do I know?").

Less practice in topics where there's been most progress is also an option. If, for example, a pupil is doing all times tables and they've got 2 wedges for the 5 ×, and 4 for the 10 × table, they would be asked one 10 × question and only two 5 × questions for every 5 questions in tables with no recorded progress.

However, if learners are doing a set assignment through a log on, the teacher has control over whether easier / harder and first know / follow on buttons are shown. There is also a skills assessment mode, in which worked solutions are not shown but questons are merely skipped if the pupil can't answer them.

Maths anxiety

0Maths has broad appeal but is specifically designed to minimise maths anxiety:

Additionally, pupils have fine control over the difficulty level, and can easily link to pre-requisite topics. This is important to keep them in their growth zone: Growth zone model of maths anxiety

Once a pupil has tipped into the panic zone, their brain is flooded with adrenaline and they can not do tasks requiring logical thinking. For this reason, most tasks start off at the easiest level (ie in the comfort zone) by default and pupils should increase the difficulty level until it suits them. There is a checkbox in settings to align the difficulty level with the target difficulty level.

In the growth zone diagram above, the pupil with the smaller growth zone is labelled mildly anxious. In severe cases of anxiety, the growth zone may be effectively non-existant. All that can be done is to expand the comfort zone by working within it.

© Copyright 2020-2024 Influenca Ltd

© Copyright Influenca Ltd 2020 - 2024