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    • National Numeracy
      Verified User verified user
    • By National Numeracy Verified User verified user 13th Sep 17, 12:53 PM
    • 38Posts
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    National Numeracy
    What are the essential numeracy skills needed for everyday life?
    • #1
    • 13th Sep 17, 12:53 PM
    What are the essential numeracy skills needed for everyday life? 13th Sep 17 at 12:53 PM
    How do you use maths in your day-to-day life? What did you learn in maths at school that was particularly helpful for your adult life? Was there anything you wish you'd learnt?

    National Numeracy has worked with experts to outline the Essentials of Numeracy - the numerical skills and understanding that everyone needs at home and at work. These are the skills that help you manage your money, work out costs, discounts and measurements, and make sense of statistics and other data.

    To find out more and to see whether you have the Essentials of Numeracy, register for the National Numeracy Challenge.

    A score of 80 or more means you have the Essentials (and is roughly equivalent to a good pass at GCSE). And if you haven't got the Essentials yet, you can use the free online resources on the Challenge to help you get there.

    Let us know how you get on!
    Official Organisation Representative
    Iím the official organisation rep for National Numeracy. MSE has given permission for me to post letting you know about relevant and useful info. You can see my name on the organisations with permission to post list. If you believe I've broken the Forum Rules please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. This does NOT imply any form of approval of my organisation by MSE
Page 1
    • Fireflyaway
    • By Fireflyaway 13th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    • 1,296 Posts
    • 1,322 Thanks
    Fireflyaway
    • #2
    • 13th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    • #2
    • 13th Sep 17, 12:57 PM
    I have dyscalculia but I get by OK. I can read the time and count up cash to pay for things. For bills I use a calculator ! Mostly nobody would notice.
    If you test was a quick quiz I would have tried but I don't want to go through a long registration process.
    Last edited by Fireflyaway; 13-09-2017 at 1:00 PM. Reason: T
    • National Numeracy
      Verified User verified user
    • By National Numeracy Verified User verified user 13th Sep 17, 1:20 PM
    • 38 Posts
    • 49 Thanks
    National Numeracy
    • #3
    • 13th Sep 17, 1:20 PM
    • #3
    • 13th Sep 17, 1:20 PM
    Hi Fireflyaway,

    Thanks for taking a look. Registration should only take a few minutes - but the full Challenge Check-Up does take around half an hour and then you can tackle the learning resources at your own pace.

    However, if you do choose to register, you can log out at any time and save your progress, so you can just pick it up where you left off next time.

    The time taken to complete your individual Challenge journey will vary according to how many topics you need to work on and what your personal goals are.
    Official Organisation Representative
    Iím the official organisation rep for National Numeracy. MSE has given permission for me to post letting you know about relevant and useful info. You can see my name on the organisations with permission to post list. If you believe I've broken the Forum Rules please report it to forumteam@moneysavingexpert.com. This does NOT imply any form of approval of my organisation by MSE
    • onomatopoeia99
    • By onomatopoeia99 13th Sep 17, 2:59 PM
    • 3,536 Posts
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    onomatopoeia99
    • #4
    • 13th Sep 17, 2:59 PM
    • #4
    • 13th Sep 17, 2:59 PM
    In day to day life I might ... add a column of figures. Last time was at the weekend, I agreed to buy a second hand van and p/x my car against it. The assistant in the dealer wrote it all out, multiplied up the VAT on the sale price to get a subtotal, wrote that down, subtracted my deposit for another subtotal, wrote that down subtracted the p/x and got to a final figure that I owed, each step on a calculator.

    He then said "I'll just check that to make sure it's right". "It is," said I, reading his paperwork upside-down across the desk. He was astonished. Apparently most people that buy second-hand vans can't multiply by 1.2 or add up integers.


    Or ... standing in John Lewis looking at fabric on the roll, I might work out how much length of a 54" roll I need to make curtains for a window that I know the metric size of. In my head, as it's not calculus or trigonometry.

    The arithmetic I do in my day job is rarely in denary, so unlikely to be applicable here.
    INTP, nerd, libertarian and scifi geek.
    Home is where my books are.
    • Kayalana99
    • By Kayalana99 14th Sep 17, 1:36 PM
    • 3,338 Posts
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    Kayalana99
    • #5
    • 14th Sep 17, 1:36 PM
    • #5
    • 14th Sep 17, 1:36 PM
    Maths is important, but I still can't understand why Finance isn't taught in schools...surely more important then learning what x + 2 = 3 is....

    Amount of times I had to explain how a mortgage works to my friends or how interest rates work etc.
    People don't know what they want until you show them.
    • PasturesNew
    • By PasturesNew 14th Sep 17, 1:42 PM
    • 60,710 Posts
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    PasturesNew
    • #6
    • 14th Sep 17, 1:42 PM
    • #6
    • 14th Sep 17, 1:42 PM
    Knowing exactly how much your shopping costs at the till, so you can have the right money ready and/or be ready with the closest note - and aware if anything's been rung through wrongly. Plus, knowing how much change to expect..... all so you can immediately spot an error and deal with it at the till without having to return to the store, and/or try to get a manager after the event etc.

    Calculating which pizza size/price will give the best value per square inch.

    There's no need mostly these days to calculate the £/100g, which I used to have to do to work out the best product to buy from a choice of 3-4 pack sizes/brands as nowadays they do print it on the label for a lot of things.

    Also, being able to calculate the discount on a product that has a YS on it, to be able to judge if it's good value or still overpriced. e.g. a lasagne that's £2.79 with a 30% sticker on it .... or should I just buy the usual £1.49 one.

    Avoiding food rip offs in the main, getting "best value"/most quantity for the £.
    • Mrs_Ryan
    • By Mrs_Ryan 15th Sep 17, 11:42 PM
    • 10,285 Posts
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    Mrs_Ryan
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 17, 11:42 PM
    • #7
    • 15th Sep 17, 11:42 PM
    I have pretty severe dyscalculia- I can't cope with cash and often get the time wrong. Bus numbers are another thing that confuse me! Done the test before and am nowhere near GCSE standard (I knew this already as I failed it miserably last year ) but that's purely down to the severity of my dyscalculia- I doubt this will ever improve.
    Very proud to be Open University BA (Hons) English Lang and Lit Graduate! ❤️DMU MA English begins 09/17
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    • onomatopoeia99
    • By onomatopoeia99 16th Sep 17, 10:17 AM
    • 3,536 Posts
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    onomatopoeia99
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 17, 10:17 AM
    • #8
    • 16th Sep 17, 10:17 AM
    Maths is important, but I still can't understand why Finance isn't taught in schools...surely more important then learning what x + 2 = 3 is....

    Amount of times I had to explain how a mortgage works to my friends or how interest rates work etc.
    Originally posted by Kayalana99
    To calculate repayments on a repayment (rather than interest only) mortgage you need algebra and logarithms... (well, and exponents, but that's all part of the same thing really)

    Mathematics, of which algebra / equations is a key constituent part from very early stages once you get beyond basic arithmetic, is a fundamental skill for science and engineering and has direct relevance in other professions as well.
    INTP, nerd, libertarian and scifi geek.
    Home is where my books are.
    • lobbyludd
    • By lobbyludd 16th Sep 17, 7:14 PM
    • 1,243 Posts
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    lobbyludd
    • #9
    • 16th Sep 17, 7:14 PM
    • #9
    • 16th Sep 17, 7:14 PM
    budgeting specifically, rather than just the maths behind it.

    understanding risk - and risk/benefit analysis which can seem complex but we do it all the time anyway, so we may as well be taught to do it more effectively.

    - the risk of having an operation vs not having it,
    - the risk of crossing a road here or there (something we instinctively calculate)

    etc.

    I think the point is not "what maths do we use" but "what things do we do that require maths", and then teach the skills required as they apply to those real life situations. It one thing to understand probability, it's another to have enough working knowledge of it to be able to assess whether to have an operation, when you've only ever been taught it in the context of how much money you'd make if you made a bet.
    A/give up smoking (done)
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