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Improving Numeracy Skills: Online Learning Resources

National Numeracy Day is today (13th May) in the UK, with a fantastic lineup of virtual talks hosted by National Numeracy. It’s a great initiative aiming to improve numeracy skills, build confidence and inspire, with sessions on everything from overcoming maths anxiety to building a budget.

While I usually write about – and teach – digital skills, I’m a not-so-secret maths nerd (and maths grad) and I believe the two go hand in hand as essential skills for adults and children alike. As a digital skills and digital marketing trainer, I encounter many adults with a lack of confidence, often bordering on a fear, when it comes to understanding and using numbers in both their personal and professional lives.

From learning Excel to understanding your bank statement or how your electricity bill is calculated, getting to grips with numbers and grasping basic maths is key to making confident financial decisions.

I’ve rounded up some of my favourite resources for learning numeracy skills, all starting from beginner level and ranging from basic maths skills to finance and budgeting life skills. A high level of numeracy skills is connected to better health and wellbeing, as well as higher employment levels and wages. A survey by National Numeracy in 2019 showed that over half of UK adults have the numeracy skills level of a primary school aged child, with a fear of maths the biggest barrier rather than actual ability.

Numeracy and Maths Skills Online Resources

BBC Skillswise – Maths – Part of BBC Teach, this offers resources on basic numeracy skills, as well as everyday maths skills such as measuring, estimating and percentages.

STEM Learning – Home learning support for families – Great resource for parents or carers looking for learning materials for both primary and secondary level. Scroll to the bottom of the page to see activities based on real-life scenarios!

Your Money Matters – Free financial education textbook – Designed for use by 14-16 year olds, this textbook is free to download and covers financial topics such as saving, debt, student finance and insurance. All the stuff that should be taught in schools! But you may also find it useful as an adult to improve financial literacy.

Citizens Advice – Debt and Money resources – Not strictly numeracy, however there are useful resources such as a budgeting calculator, plus guides to help you understand tax, mortgages, bank accounts, pensions and more.

Khan Academy – No, it’s not just for students! Although it’s US-based, this is a great resource for learning maths from basic arithmetic to more advanced topics such as statistics and calculus if you feel so inclined.

Local resources – there will be many local organisations offering free, funded and paid maths and numeracy courses in your area. Here in Manchester, try Manchester Adult Education for upcoming home learning opportunities, as well as both local and online providers such as colleges for accredited maths courses.

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