Update (25.01.18): We are proud to announce that Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software won the Primary Content award at last night’s Bett Awards.


Mathematical concepts can sometimes be hard to teach, as they are often difficult to connect to student’s real-life experiences. This is why Oxford University Press developed Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software in conjunction with Avallain. The Numicon teaching approach includes physical apparatus for primary school level Maths that are designed to teach mathematical concepts by employing a multi-sensory approach and taking advantage of children’s natural ability to recognise shapes and patterns in physical objects.

Thanks to Oxford University Press’ partnership with Avallain, these teaching resources have since been successfully adapted into the Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software, enhancing a proven pedagogy with all the possibilities offered by advanced digital technology. The revolutionary software has now earned a place among the finalists of the 2018 Bett Awards for Primary Content, perhaps the most prestigious award in the modern education industry.

What is the Numicon concept and how does it improve Maths education?

Numicon is a proven approach to teaching mathematics using a multi-sensory approach and a significant degree of interactivity. In its original form, Numicon teaching resources include physical shapes representing numbers which can be freely put together and manipulated. Thus, the Numicon approach demonstrates mathematical concepts in a way that is easily understandable and relatable in the physical world. As this pedagogical approach has been shown to improve learners’ mathematical abilities, the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics decided to fully endorse Numicon as a teaching tool.

Recently, the same teaching approach has become part of Oxford Owl, Oxford University Press’s digital learning platform for primary school learners. The Bett-Award-winning platform powered by Avallain Unity software architecture now includes the Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software.

Adapting Numicon into a digital learning software

The Numicon software uses all of the advantages of Avallain Author to allow teachers and learners to project and interact with digital Numicon apparatus on whiteboards, both regular-sized and widescreen. This allows learners to interact directly with a great number of building elements by dragging and dropping them directly on the whiteboard. This object-focussed approach not only makes mathematical concepts easy to grasp, the physical interaction on the whiteboard and the use of spoken language to explain what they are doing also serves as a significant inspirational factor for students.

Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software allows teachers to create highly motivational and effective Maths exercises using a great variety of digital resources and building elements such as different shapes, rods, base-ten apparatus, counters and numerical cards as well as explanatory text. All of these elements can be fit into various digital workspaces, including baseboards, number rod tracks, number lines and place value frames. This allows large sums and complex mathematical concepts such as division and multiplication to be handled more easily and conveniently than with physical resources.

Thanks to Avallain Author, all of these teaching materials and the ability to interact with them in a classroom setting are accessible via a highly intuitive user interface. Since the software is designed with primary education in mind, there are also many features that help children to use Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software, such as the ability to minimise the interface panel at the bottom of the screen. This makes it easier for them to reach the Numicon apparatus projected on the whiteboard.

A partnership that is driven by innovation

The highly advanced capabilities of Avallain Author have been instrumental in the success of Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software, as Simon Tanner-Tremaine, Director Digital & Home/School Services at Oxford University Press notes: “Our long-term partnership with Avallain has given us the tools to provide teachers and learners with highly effective and enjoyable interactive software. Being among the 2018 Bett Awards finalists is the most recent achievement in a long success story of award-winning Oxford University Press products created with Avallain Author and Avallain Unity.”

“Oxford University Press has firmly established itself as a publishing house driven by innovation and we are happy to be able to support them in this regard”, concurs Ignatz Heinz, Co-Founder and Managing Director at Avallain. “We have had great success using our technology and expertise to enhance many of their great products. With the help of Avallain Unity, Oxford Owl has already won a Bett Award in 2016, and we are confident we can do it again with Avallain Author and Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software this year.”

Enhancing Maths education with advanced technology

The Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software provides primary education teachers with the resources they need to make mathematical concepts instinctively understandable for their students. By combining the multisensory teaching approach of Numicon with the advanced digital capabilities of Avallain Author, we have created a digital education tool which is proven to enhance primary mathematical education significantly.

After already winning a number of Bett Awards, Digita Awards and ELTons for products created in cooperation with many of our partners in the past, we are thrilled that Numicon Interactive Whiteboard Software is among the finalists for the 2018 Bett Awards for Primary Content. We believe this is a testament to our high standards of quality and we hope to once again be able to conclusively demonstrate the positive impact of digital technology in Maths education with Numicon.


Daniel Seuling, Head of Communications, dseuling@avallain.com