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Educational terms for parents

why learning times tables is important

What exactly are age-related expectations (AREs)? These are national targets which have been set by the government to be achieved by the end of the academic year. While your child’s school may have different ways of reporting, below is the language which is likely to be used.


‘Working towards expectations’

This signifies that your child has not yet met their age-related expectations and will need more support to achieve their targets. For a child who is working towards expectations, it is worth using school holidays to help them focus on this area of the curriculum.


‘Working at expectations’

If your child is ‘working at expectations’, they have demonstrated that they are able to meet the national targets set. If your child is at this level, they would benefit from continuing to practise. DoodleMaths and DoodleEnglish are both designed to be used for ten minutes per day in order to improve fluency and confidence.


‘Working at greater depth’

Your child is ahead of the national targets set for a child of their age and have shown a very good understanding of the subject. It’s a good idea to keep practising over school breaks, but without overdoing it!


‘Emerging’, ‘beginning’ and ‘developing expectations’

Depending on the assessment system that your school uses, your child may be described as ’emerging’, ‘beginning’ or ‘developing’. 

These terms mean that your child has been taught a particular skill and can either apply it with support, or occasionally apply it to their work independently but needs to demonstrate this further.


‘Secure’ or ‘meeting expectations’

These mean that your child is performing as they should be and that they are doing what they need to in the subject and area.


‘Exceeding expectations’

For a child who has demonstrated a really strong understanding, they may be assessed as ‘exceeding expectations’. This means that they are working above age-related expectations.  


How are these working levels determined by teachers?

Using the government’s AREs, your child will receive lots of targets throughout the year, such as ‘consistently using a capital letter at the start of a sentence’ or ‘count reliably with numbers from 1 to 20’.

Teachers will keep a record of when children have demonstrated their understanding by applying it to their work, either independently or with support. Therefore, all the evidence is within every piece of your child’s work throughout the year. 

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