About Back to Front Maths

Kennedy Press Pty Ltd is a preferred supplier of numeracy professional learning services to the SA Government. Kennedy Press courses are recommended by the WA Government. 


We now have Year 7 and Year 8 Back to Front Maths for AC9.0 online, as well as Year 11 and Year 12 Essential Maths! Check them all out in the lessons bank.


Our three-year project schools show that students have increased their percentile rankings from the 53rd to the 73rd percentile. Read our April 2023 QAMT journal article on how we used a Balanced Approach to achieve this (Teaching Mathematics, April 2023, pp.10-17).


How it works:

Back to Front Maths is a teaching approach in which students

  1. Start by experimenting with unfamiliar concepts to develop new ideas. This process also guides the teacher to uncover and confront misconceptions.
  2. Explore their new ideas and connect them with more familiar maths.
  3. Formalise their findings into mathematical principles, including algorithms and formulas.
  4. Extend and generalise the new mathematical principles that they have learned to other areas of the curriculum.


Watch a 47 min video below on starting the year well, from the Professional Learning Videos section for members.



We have collected and analysed data from our projects for years, checking that Back to Front Maths significantly improves outcomes for students.

  • Our 2021 project schools experienced a 40% improvement in their growth rates on PAT Maths (2935 students, 16 schools), and 47% of our schools had their highest ever NAPLAN results.
  • Our peer-reviewed data shows that the lowest 20% of students learned at more than double the government expectations on PAT Maths when using Back to Front Maths and the Fixing Misconceptions series. In fact, in 2020 these students progressed at  2.98 times the expected rate compared to government expectations on PAT Maths.
  • Our international conference papers explain how conceptual change questioning works, and why it improves learning for high-achievers as well as students who struggle.
  • NEW! Our three-year project schools show that students have increased their percentile rankings from the 53rd to the 73rd percentile. Read a paper on how we used a Balanced Approach to achieve this from the QAMT journal.

The lowest 20% of students in our projects in 2020 progressed on standardised testing at the rate of 3 times government expectations when using these resources.

The effectiveness of this program increases over time. For schools working with us over a three year period, students increased from the 53rd to the 73rd percentile on PAT Maths.


Why Subscribe?

All subscribers to our website can access:

Sequential Lesson plans and Printable Tasks for all year levels:

Printable activities with adaptable lesson plans include Journal problems for introducing new concepts through problem-solving and addressing misconceptions, as well as Blast activities for using questioning to build the deep understanding necessary to develop mathematically. Additional fluency tasks and games help students to develop skills.

Assessment Matrices and Moderation Tasks:

A range of criteria sheets, assessment schedules and explanations are provided in both teacher and parent-friendly language. Moderation tasks are also included for taking base-line, mid-year and end-year standardised measurements.  These tasks are designed with deliberately low-level content, but with very non-standard thinking, to more accurately pinpoint growth in problem-solving, reasoning and understanding.

Investigations for Multiple Levels and Student-Friendly Extension Tasks:

Each investigation and extension task is designed to cover concepts from across at least three year levels.  These engaging, real-life tasks are designed to take a significant amount of time and cover multiple concepts.

ALL NEW for 2023! Professional Learning Videos:

With over 25 hours of free professional learning videos for members, Back to Front Maths provides teachers with targeted learning in a range of topics to exactly suit your needs. Make a strong start to the year, deal with difficult situations and increase your own content knowledge.

Join the site now

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