PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

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NVNV
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PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby NVNV » Fri Nov 18, 2022 3:12 pm

Does anyone have any experience of PIRA and PUMA scores? Please could you help me understand them?

My son is in year one at an independent school. He's just got 115 in PIRA and 98 in PUMA. His school won't give any context and I'm struggling to find anything helpful online. However, I'd like to know thresholds of what the scores mean so that I can understand what I should be expecting him to get, assuming he has no unknown learning difficulties, and also assuming he's not a mega brain, just a well educated, confident child.

I'm comfortable with the 115. We do a lot of reading at home, he's a March child and reading purple books on the Oxford Book Bands, and does well in weekly spelling tests. I trust that it's a fair assessment of his reading potential.

I'm not comfortable with the 98. Generally, he's a bright, curious and eager child, and loves school. I question why it's so low and wonder if the maths teaching at school is inadequate. Because school won't give me the range of scores in the year, I can't know if my son is struggling with the maths others are grasping, or if he's not being taught it in the first place. His school is a good all-rounder, though has a slight reputation among some parents of not being academic enough (though school obviously denies this and claims it's a result of being non-selective).

Equally, Numbots is the only numeracy we do at home, which only started this term, and there are no weekly tests / challenges at school for us to practise with him. So we're going to pull our socks up and create some of our own numeracy homework.

From what I understand, 100 is a national average, normalised for age, across both independent and state schools. Scores of 125+ equate to super smart, while 115 is generally smart (though please correct me if I'm wrong).

What PUMA scores have your children got in year one? If you're a teacher, what PUMA score would you expect a generally bright and keen child to get in year one? Finally, how broadly used are PIRA and PUMA?
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Goldhawk
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby Goldhawk » Sat Nov 19, 2022 9:03 am

Given you are paying fees I would push the school to give more context on what these scores mean.
Otherwise what is the point of telling you these scores.

What is the school using this information for?
Is there a score at which children should see additional targeted intervention? eg extra small group maths
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NVNV
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby NVNV » Sun Nov 20, 2022 11:15 am

Thanks for replying. You ask good questions and you’re right that I push it with school. I just wanted to try to get a bit more info before I do that.
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NVNV
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby NVNV » Sun Nov 20, 2022 3:24 pm

If anyone comes across this post struggling with the same question I found these two helpful charts online - slightly different thresholds which is why I’ve included both.

The table is from NFER and the curve from Hodder Education, who own the tests (for KS3 but I think the numbers apply across most years).
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Puma and Pira
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby Puma and Pira » Mon Nov 21, 2022 7:33 am

One thing to keep in mind is that this is a snapshot of one moment in time. As he is in Y1 it is unlikely that he has faced many assessments similar to these before. This is often one of the factors as to why schools start assessments from a young age, to familiarise children with the assessment processes.

Having looked at the front of the autumn term Y1 assessment it covers four areas, number, operations (+/-), measure and geometry. Depending on how the school organises their curriculum they may not have covered much measure or geometry so far this year and may have focused on number work, therefore this may also be a factor.

Is there a PT night coming up where you can ask more in person? If not, ask the teacher for a catch-up before or after school one day and ask them to talk you through it. An explanatory guide to the assessments would be helpful for everyone in the class.
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Naomi - The Brainery
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby Naomi - The Brainery » Mon Nov 21, 2022 7:41 am

Hello!
I'm so sorry that these test results have caused you undue concern. Was any other information shared, e.g. what do they use these results to inform? Are they running any intervention groups as a result of this data?

I think if the school are treating these results as a "snapshot" I wouldn't be too concerned as as you've seen 98 falls within the average range. It's also one of the first more formal tests that your child has taken and many other factors can influence scores. Did they sit paper based tests or online ones? Young children's computer literacy/ spatial reasoning may affect their end result.

As Goldhawk said, I think it's really important to check in with the school. A test like this usually generates a lot of data, which if shared could help you and the school to develop your child's Maths skills.
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NVNV
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Re: PIRA and PUMA Scores in Year One

Postby NVNV » Mon Nov 21, 2022 1:42 pm

Thanks for the responses, and really helpful questions and suggestions. At the very least this has prompted us to take more responsibility over his maths. We're out of London and don't have great prep choices for the boarding route we hope to take. A teacher friend said that age standardised tests generally are 110 av for independent, and probably closer to 120 av for central London independent, so back to my original point, we're going to pull up our socks at home.
Naomi I'll also get in touch about your online book club, as it sounds excellent!
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