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Weymouth parents lead by example when it comes to maths

Mums and dads have signed up for a free adult maths course so they can help their children with homework.

A group of parents from Conifers Primary School in Chickerell are the latest learners to benefit from the free nationwide Multiply maths programme being delivered by Skills & Learning with Dorset Council.

Multiply is delivered by a range of providers across the county and offers short numeracy-based courses based around everything from supporting children with schoolwork, to help with managing bills, budgeting, and cooking. Since September 2022, 1000, Dorset people have signed up for the free sessions.

The year five parents’ group at Conifers is working with tutor James for one, two-hour session a week for four weeks, learning simple, relatable games and methods for working with numbers, which they can play and practise with their children.

The school is hosting the sessions and is also providing free creche care for non-school age siblings.

Parent Beccy said: “I signed up because I wanted to be able to help my son. When I’ve tried to help him with his maths in the past he’s said: “Mum! that’s not right! Maths homework could be very frustrating for us all. But this is really helping.”

She added: “I found maths at school difficult and was nervous this would be like school. But it isn’t at all. James is a great teacher, very patient and calm and if we don’t get something we just try something else until we do.”

Stacey said: “My daughter has been referred for ADHD assessment and sometimes finds concentrating on her maths difficult. We learn with James and then the children come in during their break time and see what we have learned and play with us. It’s good because I can also teach the games to my husband, so it is enabling us to learn together as a family.”

One father said: “James is a good teacher. We come as a family and our daughter enjoys the maths games very much.”

Another parent said he is enjoying learning with his son: “I think it is important to be able to help your children to learn. My son learns well in a practical way and so we are enjoying the way we can play games and learn at the same time.”  

Tutor James Houston said: “We are passionate about making maths less scary and, hopefully, enjoyable. Our courses focus on building on the skills you have and then building your maths confidence through relaxed, friendly courses that go at your pace. We’d love to support you, so do get in touch!”.

Donna Newport, Assistant Head at Conifers said: “We are very happy to host James from Skills & Learning for the Multiply sessions. The feedback has been great from everyone involved and we are now recommending the sessions to other schools in the area.”

Multiply courses are free for Dorset and BCP residents, aged 19 or above.

The in-person or online courses are also open to parent groups, community groups and businesses which would like to enable their staff to attend.

For more information about Multiply and the many courses on offer click here.