Numbers At Work

Numbers at Work supports the Our Manchester vision of a highly skilled city…

“A ‘knowledge’ city where all Manchester children are given the opportunity to go to excellent schools that will prepare them for the very competitive future job market.”

Employers look for employees to have basic maths qualifications as standard. That’s where BW3 and local businesses come in with ‘Numbers at Work’; together providing fun, maths based sessions for primarily school children aged 10 and 11.

By taking students out of the usual classroom maths sessions, they get the chance to enjoy and appreciate how maths and problem solving is used every day in the workplace, across a variety of different job roles and industries. It soon dawns on them that what they are learning really does apply to real life situations.

The sessions are run in conjunction with Manchester Airport Group and their community liaison team along with volunteers from BW3 members and other local businesses that provide support and encouragement.

How does it work?

Taking place over a morning, Numbers at Work involves four or five different workshops that each group of children rotates around. Each workshop activity is delivered by a local organisation and usually involve maths based activities relevant to their business.

Read our latest news about Numbers at Work here.

Providers past and present include:


In this session the students map their choice of smoothie ingredients in to a pie chart and ask their class mates to rate the taste.

Manchester Airport Group (MAG)

The students package an item, and send it to a far flung destination, calculating along the way the weight and cost to send.

Wythenshawe Community Housing Group (WCHG)

WOW Zone: Using a special application on an ipad the students create the footprint of a room from measurements given.

Laing O’Rourke

Pupils are challenged to build the strongest, highest tower – using only paper and sellotape – in the most cost effective way.

Conlon Construction

New to Numbers at Work for 2018, this award winning company are keen to contribute and showcase how maths is used in everyday construction

Co-op Funeralcare

The Co-op and its members have raise an amazing £20 million for local causes and enrolled over 2,000 new recruits on to a funeral apprenticeship nationwide. In this session the funeralcare team are able to breakdown some misconceptions about the services on offer and get students to consider career roles they probably have never thought of.

One Advice Group

This session is about helping the students make positive financial choices and to understand the consequences of their decisions.

The feedback from the students, parents, teachers, volunteers and participating businesses has been amazing, so BW3 would like to add new workshops covering different industry sectors and to offer Numbers at Work to more schools throughout the year.

When surveyed, 100% of the 170 pupils that engaged in Numbers at Work sessions 2017-18, acknowledged and said that they better understood the importance of maths as a direct result of the sessions

Why get involved?

  • Help your local future workforce to engage in maths and showcase why maths attainment is important.
  • Help primary school students to see what future employment opportunities there are.
  • Introduce students to your business or brand and showcase it to the local talent.
  • Motivate, reward and recognise employees by providing them with an opportunity to give and gain.
  • Help employees develop their own personal skills.

Want to get involved?

If you, your business or a group of people you work with would like to get involved please contact Zara Rudkin, BW3 Co-ordinator by email on

If you would like some help to create a game or session, let her know as BW3 will also be able to help with that too. We can help create a Numbers at Work session that reflects your brand, product or service offered and demonstrates how employees use maths and problem solving in their everyday work life.