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Wood helps launch MBNA Tackling Numbers

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Wood joined a class of around 25 Year 4 children to deliver lessons from Tackling Numbers, a programme helping to teach basic mathematics to thousands of youngsters across England. Now in its second year, the five-week programme is proving to be a big hit with schools in the area.

Saints back row Wood enjoyed his afternoon and even brushed up on his own maths skills in the process.

"My maths was certainly put under a bit of pressure today," Wood said at the launch. "The kids did great though. The project is really good for them and to have MBNA put their weight behind it helps a lot.

"There was never anything like this when I was at school. All of our learning was a bit mundane and I certainly would have enjoyed a day like today."

Ben Mann, who is co-ordinating the programme for the Saints explained further.

"Tackling Numbers is a brilliant way of tying the classroom to the sports pitch and this is the second year we have delivered lessons to eight and nine-year-olds in this region. The programme uses the power of rugby to promote the understanding and learning of numeracy in a fun and exciting way and the children clearly enjoy it."

Developed by MBNA in partnership with Premiership Rugby, Tackling Numbers is supported and delivered to schools across the country by all 12 Premiership Rugby teams. In its first year, the programme reached 8,400 eight and nine-year-olds in 280 different English schools.

Ian O'Doherty, Europe Card Executive for MBNA, is pleased to see the project's continued success.

"We are delighted that Tom Wood could join the children at St Andrews School to help bring these lessons to life," O'Doherty said. "Tackling Numbers is all about engaging children in mathematics in a practical and enjoyable way because it's important that we provide young people with the knowledge to help them manage their money in the future.

"We hope this programme provides them with a memorable experience but more importantly, a foundation for good numeracy skills and financial literacy in adulthood."

The key aims of the project are to improve young people's understanding of the importance of basic financial and numeracy skills; while increasing physical exercise and activity at the same time. The exercise element also counts as a contribution towards the five hour offering of high quality PE and sport in schools.

Wayne Morris, Head of Community at Premiership Rugby added: "Rugby has long been seen as a social game that unites and brings people together. In more recent years rugby's ability to engage with children is being used to transcend into the classroom.

"The Tackling Numbers Programme utilises the power of rugby to promote the understanding and learning of numeracy in a fun and enjoyable way. The classroom sessions are supported by practical PE sessions that unite an active mind with an active body."


MBNA supports a range of initiatives that are helping children to improve their numeracy, teenagers to understand the way finance works and adults to receive the support they need to help them improve their financial situation. For more information, visit the company's website by clicking here

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