The 2018 KS 2 Maths Arithmetic Paper is now available on the site: free of charge and does not count as a print credit for those on a trial.
Many have said that this is the toughest Arithmetic Paper so far and it is certainly worth close examination to see what the examiners are now expecting children to be able to do. This is purely an arithmetic test so there will be no word problems or reasoning involved. However, 30 minutes for 36 questions does not leave much time to spare and to complete all the questions children must know, off by heart, number bonds and multiplication tables.
Taking each of the 4 rules in turn, let’s begin with addition.
It all starts off very nicely with a simple addition:
39 + 673 =
which children can lay out in columns and complete. However, it soon gets tricky with an addition of decimals, where one number has a hundredth column and the other doesn’t.
56.38 + 24.7 =
Important to keep the decimal points in line!
A question that looks like subtraction but can be done by addition is:
? = 5,776 – 855
Then we get on to the really big stuff:
3,050,020 = 3,000,000 + ? + 20
The large numbers make this rather off-putting, but it is really more of a place value question than an addition. Overall, not much addition on this paper.
Moving on to subtraction, the first question will trick many children as there is a zero to subtract from:
7,064 – 502
This is followed by two subtractions involving decimals. The first:
10 – 5.4 =
could be done mentally but the second:
6 – 5.738
is harder if done on paper but relatively easy to do mentally. Again, not a great deal of subtraction.
Multiplication starts very easily with:
2 x 45 =
followed by 5 x 4 x 10 =
both of which I would expect children to complete mentally.
Then we get to the standard written method of multiplication with
785 x 23 and 5413 x 86
neither of which should cause any problems for those who understand the written method.
There are also a couple of multiplying decimals questions:
0.5 x 28 = and 3.9 x 30 =
Division, as always will probably cause more problems. Simple enough to begin with:
838 ÷ 1 = ? 99 ÷ 11 = ? 270 ÷ 3 = ? 5,400 ÷ 9 = ? and 60 ÷ 15 = ?
which can all be done mentally, followed by the written method:
645 ÷ 43 and 8827 ÷ 97, both already set out in the correct format.
More division than anything else!
Beyond this there are also the usual square number and percentage questions, but there are also plenty of fractions, including addition of fractions and a couple of multiplications.
So, is it harder than in the past? There are some easy questions but as there are so many questions involving division and fractions this would certainly be tough for those who struggle with these concepts. A child who has an excellent grasp of arithmetic would enjoy the test.
This paper can be an excellent source of revision for those just entering year 6 but most schools will probably be using them at some point and there is a danger of false expectations if children do the test more than once. Far better to go to our KS2 Maths SATs Booster pages.