Linking the KS1 Maths Test to the TAF

    Published: 04 June 2019

    The tests and the Teacher Assessment Frameworks (TAFs) tend not to cover exactly the same things.

    They both assess a subset of the Key Stage 1 curriculum (neither tool attempts to assess the whole of the curriculum) and there are significant areas of overlap. But the scope of the two different assessment tools do not cover exactly the same domains.

    Having said that though, the TAF states that teachers must take into account the children's test performance:

    The evidence informing a teacher’s judgement must include the statutory end-of-key stage 1 mathematics test, which does not focus solely on the key aspects in this framework but will provide evidence to support the judgement overall and assess the broader curriculum. A pupil’s answers to specific questions in the test, or any other test, may also provide evidence that pupils have met certain statements.

    When conducting a KS1 moderation visit, I always aim to focus mostly on the evidence of children's learning produced during normal classroom activity and ongoing assessment throughout the year. But it is always useful to know when there are particular questions on the test that relate to particular statements on the TAF, to supplement that evidence base if necessary. Hence I have produced the document below that matches up test questions, from the 2019 KS1 maths tests, to TAF statements.

    Some of the questions on the test don't relate to any TAF statement, or might be thought of as a 'fuzzy' match. Take the following question, for example (Paper 2, question 15). It requires children to firstly use subtraction to find the amount of change (50p-30p), then to identify the purse that pictures coins to the value of that amount of change (20p). The identification of the purse that shows 20p is, in my opinion, a 'fuzzy match' for the TAF statement "The pupil can use different coins to make the same amount": it's not asking the child to do precisely that (find different ways of making 20p), but it would seem reasonable to assume that if a child correctly answered this question then they should be able to meet that 'pupil can' statement.

    Paper 2, Question 15

    As well as 'fuzzy' matches, some questions fall in-between two statements. For example, Paper 1 question 8 is 98+4. This level of difficulty lies beyond the Working Towards statement "add ... two-digit numbers and ones ... where no regrouping is required" but is not as challenging as the Expected Standard statement "add and subtract any 2 two-digit numbers using an efficient strategy".

    Most questions on the tests, however, I have been able to match up to TAF statements - and the pdf document at the foot of this blog is the fruit of this exercise. I hope it proves to be useful.

    One final point - when it comes to using the children's test responses as part of the evidence for the teacher assessment, I take the view that an incorrect answer does not necessarily mean that a child doesn't understand that concept - they may have misread the question or just made a silly mistake on that occasion. (These children are only 7, or in some cases not yet reached their 7th birthday, and tests can be unreliable indicators of a child's true level of understanding at this age.) However, a correct answer on a test can be a pretty good indicator that a child does understand the mathematical concept that the question is testing.* (Either that, or that they are good at guessing!)

    * Edit: after I published this, one of my colleagues in our maths team made a very important point to me, which I need to share. A correct answer on the test is not always a good enough indicator that the child meets the relevant TAF statement - it may depend on how that correct answer was reached. For example, take the statement (from the Expected Standard):

    The pupil can add and subtract any 2 two-digit numbers using an efficient strategy

    (emphasis added)

    It may be clear from the child's jottings that they have definitely not used an efficient strategy, although they may have reached the correct answer. For example, if an addition sum such as 37 + 46 has been worked out via a counting approach (e.g. drawing 37 little dots, then another 46 little dots, then counting them all up) - I think we can all agree that is not an efficient strategy. As a moderator, I would then need to look elsewhere in the child's maths book to find the evidence that they can actually use an efficient strategy (even though on this occasion they didn't). Thanks to Siobhan for that important clarification. 

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