How can teachers help children to develop reasoning skills? What is reasoning and how do we teach it? Much is being said in schools and education about the importance of reasoning skills. This book explores what reasoning is and what it is not. It includes examples of how reasoning in primary mathematics and science classes can develop. It shows how a connection between the ‘skills’ of mathematics and science can help children to gain a better understanding of reasoning. What is a conjecture? What makes you think? What makes you think about your thinking? What does reasoning look like? With links to classroom practice and examples of effective teaching throughout, this book not only provides an exploration of what reasoning is and why it’s important - it also show you how to develop children’s reasoning skills in your classroom.

Frameworks to promote reasoning

Frameworks to promote reasoning

In this chapter

By the end of this chapter you will:

  • have explored a range of skills associated with reasoning;
  • have considered different frameworks to use to support reasoning in mathematics and science;
  • understand how useful it is to make reasoning explicit within the classroom.


Reasoning in mathematics and science is part of doing mathematics and science; perhaps the most important part. We can teach learners how to add numbers together, but do they really understand the concept of addition? They may be able to draw a food chain but are they appreciating how dependent organisms are on sunlight? To solve the problems that arise from everyday life we need to think and reason. This type of working is not about following ...

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