SUM1 had three aims. The first was to discover how executive function skills (e.g. manipulating information in memory, flexible thinking, ignoring distractions) are involved in factual, procedural and conceptual maths knowledge.
The second was to distinguish between the skills needed for learning new mathematical material and those needed for performing already‐learned mathematical operations. Finally, we explored how the role of executive function skills changes as children grow older and become more proficient in maths. We used a variety of different research methods, including measuring children’s individual performance on experimental tasks as well as studying learning in the classroom, to achieve these aims.