Tag Archives: learning

#MathsRocks Round Up! 03/09/18

Hey all! Hope you have had a wonderfully refreshing summer. Had a little break from publishing #MathsRocks posts but going to get back into it for a bit. Hoping to share some more wonderful Maths ideas at #MathsRocks but we are nothing without your brilliant sharing of ideas. So please share #MathsRocks and hopefully we’ll have some excellent things to share! Share, share, share!

1. Maths Working Wall

To kick off the new school year, we had to share this from @Primary5Teach and I can’t believe we haven’t included this yet!

These are just two examples of her excellent working walls. If each classroom had something like this, then wall space would be used usefully. It would be a good idea to at least look at the sections on these working walls and try and implement some in your learning areas. Nothing more to say really, the visual brilliance of these walls speak for themselves!

2. Resourceaholic

It just shows just how much is out there to make the teaching and learning of Maths that much easier! Here is a website with bundles (literally) of resources to make Maths more visual and engaging! Thanks to @mathsjem for sharing this one from @nikki_nzmartin.

There is actually more resources than the one mentioned from the site – which is called resourcaholic. It is primarily aimed at secondary maths but there are plenty of Primary Maths resources also.

Worth a look!

1

3. Who doesn’t love a GIF…

…well @HP_Saucerer has shared the perfect #MathsRocks equivalent!

Follow these links from @presentcorrect, @iainclaridge and Pi Slice:

http://pislices.ca/

Hope you have a great start to the year! Keep sharing on #MathsRocks!

Advertisements

What an Adventure by Watadventure by @Mroberts90Matt

I was given the opportunity to have a copy of a book to read over and see what I thought. I wasn’t really given any details about what the book was, only that it was targeted at Year 2/3. As I am going to be started a new phase of my Teaching Journey in Year 3, I thought it would be a great opportunity.
When this dropped through my letterbox I was instantly hooked:

watadventure-in-australia-cover

Aside from the intriguing characters on the front of the book, what also caught my eye was the title. An interesting play on words. So I did what only you would do when something catches your eye in this day and age – I Googled it.

What I found got me even more excited. It turned out that this group were on a new journey themselves and that this book was the first in what I hope will be a fantastic series of these characters travelling the world and bringing us along for the magical ride. However, there was even more to it than that…

This is where WatAdventure stand out from the rest. There are three main characters in this story: Sirius the dour but passionate dog who just wants the best sightseeing possible and Jiblets, the impulsive but lovable monkey who enjoys the thrill of a new adventure. The third main character in this story is Lola, the girl who to whom Sirius and Jiblets belong to as toys before the magic begins. However, she is not just a storybook character…Lola is actually a real person. She won a competition in designing a flag for the Watabus (the three friends transport on this exciting outing) and as she was selected, she won the opportunity to be part of this story. This was fascinating so I looked a little bit more into it – it turned out that WatAdventure produce personalised stories for children which ignite their interest in reading for pleasure. I am looking mainly at ‘WatAdventure in Australia’ but this was a brilliant idea and I’ll already be looking out for future developments at this cutting-edge publisher.

Back to Australia…

Illustration

I decided to read this to my two children – 5 and 3 years old. One is about to go into Year 2 so this was perfect. The first reaction I got when opening the cover was ‘Wowwww…’ – such is the quality of the illustration. I share an image from the WatAdventure Gallery below – there are plenty more at this site https://www.watadventure.com/gallery:

h2Woofsn9OknEGhxRln0VP94v133FAOxyd2ETrRd

The fact is that reading the story alone was captivating enough. In reality, we could have spent hours poring over the finer details of this book. We could have spent ten or more minutes pointing out the gadgetry wizardry in the Watabus, the thriving life in the Australian bush, the fascinating schools in the Great Barrier Reef or the bustling Bondi Beach. They say don’t judge a book by its cover – in this case you should make an exception.

Story

If the illustrations weren’t enough to grab the readers interest, then the writing of this story will. I read this to my children with delight. The flow of the narrative was exquisite. As I read, there was a rhythm to the words and the vocabulary used was outstanding. My wife actually commented on the words used and how much it stretched our children. With a storyteller, there is nothing wrong with this – in fact I say it should be encouraged. The vocabulary was thoughtfully selected enough to push the children but be accessible enough to keep the flow going. A real highlight. 

Characters

I loved the characters. Sirius and Jiblets were the standouts and I presume this was because they will be the focus of the series. From the first page in which they came to life, their character style was instantly recognisable. Jiblets would be the fun-loving companion whilst Sirius would be the ever-suffering, self-appointed tour guide. It made for great reading.

And if that wasn’t enough…

As the story closed, I was fully satisfied as a parent reading this book to my children. They were silent and captivated (a good sign!) and looked forward to closely looking at the illustrations and my 5 year old wanted to read it himself. But then we turned the final page…

An explosion on non-fictional information and great puzzles for the kids to look back over the pages of the book and search. This sold it for me. The re-readability of this book as the children go back over the story’s events and see where in Australia they took place make this a brilliant addition to any child’s bookshelf – I’d say certainly up to Year 4.

For Teachers

But the brilliance of this story doesn’t stop there. With each purchase of the book (which is a price that is certainly not extortionate) there comes with it:

  • Guided Reading questions
  • 3 comprehension lessons
  • 5 writing lessons

For a year group maybe looking at Aboriginal culture this would be an incredible addition to their curriculum.

I’m not being asked to sell this resource, but I know I’ll certainly be looking into this for our curriculum!

#MathsRocks Round Up! 28/05/18

It’s the holidays!! Hope you all have a nice, relaxing break planned – or nothing planned at all! Either way, read on for some relaxing Maths ideas which will engage your learners and make Maths rock!

1. Classic Top Trumps – F/D/P

Last time, we shared a great entry by @misslkfidler where the children learnt about fraction, decimal and percentage equivalents using the game ‘Go Fish’. This week, another way to practise and learn essential maths facts, like these equivalences. Top Trumps is a classroom classic and this twist on the Top Trumps with fractions, decimals and percentages is a great idea!

1

2. Maths4Everyone!!

This is a great shout by @crisp_aholic! Thousands of FREE maths resources  from @Maths4Everyone. The link is here: https://www.tes.com/teaching-resources/shop/Maths4Everyone
Don’t really have much more to say on that – just click and download.

1

3. Conversion Chart

And finally, a great visual support shared by @crisp_aholic:

1

Conversion of metric units can cause great confusion. Some sort of visual support initially will support learning in the class. Of course they will not be able to use these beyond the classroom but any amount of support and visualisation will help.

That’s your lot for this week! Have a wonderful break and good luck for Summer 2!

#MathsRocks Round Up! 14/05/18

Hope all of you are enjoying another exciting week. Of course, for those Year 6 teachers of us you will be having a ‘testing’ week but I’m hoping your first day at the SATs with the children has been a positive experience! Enjoy losing yourself in the wonderful Maths ideas and problems!

1. Which One Doesn’t Belong?

Want a reasoning resource with a difference? http://wodb.ca/ gives you that!
There is a big push towards developing children’s reasoning, including giving problems that have been solved slightly incorrectly and you have to find the error. Well, this website is different. It presents different sets of numbers, shapes and other objects. Children are required to select one of the options and reason why that one doesn’t belong. Simple right 🙂 but effective. Thank you to @Mister_Hubbard for sharing!

2

2. “Go Fish!”

I loved this idea by @misslkfidler. Great idea to use for fraction/decimal/percentage equivalence but this could work for a number of concepts also – such as ratios, types of shapes and so on. Here’s the picture…

1

3. Maths Starter for a Day

@7puzzle shared this idea which was brought to #MathsRocks attention by @MrBramley25. One day this can be a quick problem to get brains into gear:

Your task is to arrive at the target answer of 18 by using each of the four numbers 2, 6, 7, and 10 exactly once each and with + – × ÷ available.

Another great idea from this share is where you use the digits in the date (such as 1, 4, 0, 5, 2, 0, 1 and 8 from today) and try to get the closest to 100 using the four operations.

Enjoy the rest of your week – share on #MathsRocks, and good luch for the rest of this SATs week.!

Daily Whole Class Feedback Mark Two by @Mroberts90Matt

So, workload. It’s been shown to be quite high on the agenda by the DfE, Ofsted, Parliament and so on. Among the problem areas – marking has been highlighted. I previously posted a blog about whole class feedback which significantly cut back on the amount I was writing in children’s books and increased the engagement with the feedback. Find it here.

I have been using the method in the blog now for almost four years and would recommend it to anyone. What I have found is hours of freed up time to use to plan more quality interventions and next steps with the feedback I give to the children.

However, I have found something which may be even quicker (at least, in the week I have begun trialling it, when it used to take 20mins-30mins to mark a set of Maths books it now takes ~10-mins-15mins! To be honest, this web page explains it very well so I will leave it to do most of the explaining as I am considering my work-life balance 😉

1

It is well worth considering though – once again, my time has been freed even more and I have found (initially anyway) to have a much bigger impact on the children’s understanding through more regular, consistent verbal feedback. There have been a number of moments working with specific targeted children where they have had ‘a-ha’ moments because of the way this feedback approach enables the class to be moved forward with minimal effort from the teacher so they can plan an effective feedback time at the start of the next lesson.

#MathsRocks Round Up! 30/04/18

Here we are a couple of weeks into the new term! Hope all is going well! You have a wonderful Bank Holiday to look forward to next week also so it is all looking rosy :). Now, here is your regular dose of #MathsRocks ideas and problems to try out in the classroom.

1. Maths Bags for Home

This idea hits home (quite literally) for me. I have a 5 year old son and he is struggling with his Maths. One of the problems we have as a young family with two young children is finding the time to gather (and keep together) quality resources. @nurserycrookfur have shared a great Maths set that they send home which was shared by @CrookfurPC.

1

This is just one example of a great idea which I’m sure many schools are doing but it’s a classic worth sharing. In Year 6 we do something similar but with more appropriate material – revision packs, times tables…some homes may not use them but I’m sure many would appreciate it.

2. More CPA examples

Another great share by @crisp_aholic. The concrete-pictorial-abstract (CPA) is very much a focus now in general maths education, particularly those with a mastery approach. As such, it is always great to see practical ideas, like this one:

3.jpg

4

One great suggestion with this idea is asking children to come and draw their own examples and there you have fantastic discussion potential just from that exercise.

3. Dojo Problem

And finally, as we like on #MathsRocks, a little problem for you to try. Many of you will have heard of @classdojo and they make an appearance with this great problem shared by @busyteacher247. Not much explanation is needed – just have a go and share it with your class:

1

Have a great couple of weeks! Don’t forget to share your Maths ideas and suggestions on the #MathsRocks hashtag!

Oh and finally, we couldn’t let this one go without a mention by @Miss_B35, shared by @crisp_aholic…

2.jpg

#MathsRocks Round Up! 16/04/18

Hello all!! Here it is again – your fortnightly boost of Maths teaching ideas and suggestions! Everyone will be back at school by now – hope Summer 1 has had an excellent start! Here is this week’s ideas:

1. Food Maths!

I love food! I love Maths. Check out this wonderful idea by @J0H00K and shared by @Mister_Hubbard:

2

Maths is everywhere around us. The children sometimes do not recognise this and just how much Maths has an impact on them – even the food they eat! It would be great to see any more Food Arrays or just #FoodMaths in general that you see. Here is mine:

3

2. KS2 teaching Early Years

A great entry from @grove_road was shared. They had a #mathsrocks day!! Exciting or what!?? Would love to hear what else they did that day! Anyway, they shared a wonderful idea where their KS2 children went to the Early Years to support the younger children in creating brilliant number lines.

4

What I love about the idea of older children teaching others is their depth of understanding MUST be on point. Some training will be required but when they then go to try and teach others with a weaker knowledge they will inevitably be asked questions – and they will need to answer. However, they will quickly learn they have to be clear with their explanations…

3. The Golden Cube Problem

We like to finish with a problem for you to try in the classroom. This one, shared by @Mroberts90Matt, is aimed mainly at Year 6’s who are grasping the concept of volume. This gets them to think about the number of cubes in each layer, the actual volume and a practical context where the deconstruct a 3D object. That’s enough from me – have a go yourself!

We hope you find at least one of these ideas or challenges useful – try them out! Even better, if you have another idea you have tried in your classroom, please share with the #MathsRocks hashtag so others can benefit!

#MathsRocks Round Up 19/03/18!

Good Monday all! Hoping in the midst of Spring 2 you are all doing well and the excitement of this wonderful job you have is not overwhelming you! Not to mention the opportunity you have to teach Maths to eager young minds 🙂 here are some ideas and resources to help you out!

1. Multiplication Tables Check Letter

Hopefully the news from over a month ago (although let’s be fair, this has been announced for quite a while now…) that there will be a multiplication tables check has settled in with you. Anyway, #MathsRocks is not here to debate and discuss the ins and outs of it. However, we are here to signpost you towards a really useful resource by @TTRockStars to inform your parents about it. The great thing is that it is completely editable – there is a lot of information there and some may or may not be as important in your school’s opinion. So, you can adapt it and use it very quickly. Here’s the link: https://ttrockstars.com/page/mtc

1

2. Mastering Manipulatives

Being a Year 6 teacher, I don’t tend to reach for the concrete resources. Up until this year I didn’t really use many pictorial examples in my teaching. Not good, I know. Anyway, seeing this setup by @MissJ_2801 has inspired me to do something similar:

2

I suppose the ideal would be that all children will be given the opportunity that this great practitioner has given her class in every class they go into. If children are given the chance to access manipulatives in their Maths learning consistently, then hopefully they will be more confident selecting them in later Maths problems to assist them in reasoning and solving.
It doesn’t really matter how you get the concrete resources into the children’s hands – but they must have access to them.

3. Make It – Draw It – Abstract ‘Trick’

I love this idea by @crisp_aholic. We are being bombarded by the ‘Concrete-Pictorial-Abstract’ approach by a number of sources and for good reason. As such, this great #MathsRocker has been encouraging their class to not only be taught in this approach, but also to create their own examples in this process:

3

What is great about this is that the children do get to experience the Maths physically for themselves. This learning process then moves to a pictorial stage which they will find useful to structure themselves when they come across unfamiliar contexts where they can try to use those same skills to understand what is being asked. On top of this, the children can then begin to learn useful tricks which can make them more fluent in calculations. There is nothing wrong with children learning tricks (such as “divide by the bottom, times by the top”) but ONLY if they understand the Maths behind it. In other words, why are they dividing by the denominator (because it helps them find the unit fraction of the amount they are looking for and so on). If the understanding of the Maths is founded on concrete experiences and pictorial manipulation then they are more likely to understand why the abstract tricks apply and remember them more.
Try it out soon – Make-Draw-Trick.

Hopefully there will be one #MathsRocks share here that will be useful in the coming weeks – please try them out and share your own great Maths classroom practice with the hashtag #MathsRocks!

#MathsRocks Round Up! 19/02/18

Welcome back after another half term and here we are embarking on Spring 2! Lighter mornings, going home when it’s not dark – looking forward to summer. And of course another #MathsRocks round up! Let’s do this!

1. Number Day 2018!

1

This great idea was brought up by @lea_forest_dht. Friday 2nd February was Number Day driven by the @NSPCC. It seems like a great idea where Maths activities can take centre stage, Maths can get everyone involved and even the odd dressing up event also. Unfortunately the day has passed but it may be worthwhile pencilling in to look this up December-time so the preparations can begin.

2. Gary Hall Resources

2

Wondering where to begin resourcing lessons for Maths? @leah_moo highlighted a great website where every curriculum objective is linked to a number of potential sources or resources to use for Years 1-6. It’s very much worth bookmarking this on your laptop so that when you are planning you can quickly refer to this. Not only are there unique resources to use but there are the occasional links to other activities such as on nRich and NCETM so it will hopefully challenge all your learners as well! See the link below:

https://garyhall.org.uk/primary-maths-resources.php

3. Brutal Challenge!

3

And finally, here at #MathsRocks the majority of things we share are great resource ideas or ways to enhance your mathematics teaching in the classroom. However we occasionally like to give you a challenge to solve yourself and this time we have one from @Mister_Hubbard which (I’ll be honest with you) will take some time and patience for you to solve. He has also provided a solution which I will post at the bottom of this #MathsRocks Round Up…happy number crunching!

Please don’t forget to share any great Maths ideas, resources, displays, lessons, manipulatives, challenges…and so on to #MathsRocks  on Twitter. There are more and more items being shared and it’s really appreciated! Please share the @MathsRocks_2 handle as well so more can join the Maths fun!

 

(PS Here is the solution to @Mister_Hubbard’s problem)

4

#MathsRocks Round Up! 05/02/18

Welcome again to another #MathsRocks Round Up – where you can find useful ideas for teaching Primary Maths! Let’s jump straight in – and guess what, one more week until another break. You can do it!

1. Books to inspire Maths

1

Recently on #PrimaryRocks there was a wonderful focus on Maths. It was a magical, mathematical evening! One of the questions was a great one – what books do teachers use to inspire and generate discussion on Maths? It was incredible but a little overwhelming to see the replies flowing in. Fortunately @Mister_Hubbard who led the discussion has collected the suggestions and they can be found here on an editable document – link here

2. Visual fraction games

Spring term is a wonderful time of year where Fractions are often on the agenda for a number of year groups. The question is – how do we make fractions engaging, purposeful and give the children a wide variety of models to interact with? @MissSDoherty shared a wonderful, eye-catching activity where children had to sort a variety of 1/2, 1/3 and 1/4 models as a group. This allows them to see how one example of a 1/3 can look different to another but still indicate a 1/3 also!3

In a similar vein to this, at our school (@Mroberts90Matt) to round off our Fractions unit in Year 6, we created a fraction game. This game was based on the @nrichmaths activity found here: https://nrich.maths.org/8283

The game requires children to understand different ways of representing fractions and matching equivalent proportions. They were then able to go to various Year 3 and 4 classes to have to explain and teach how to play this game. Not only does this requite a secure grasp of equivalent fractions but also explain it to younger children.

2

3. Curriculum Mapping Tools (nRich and NCETM)

You may or may not already know about this incredibly useful tool but nonetheless it is absolutely worth a share!

@goulds_mr drew attention to the @nrichmaths one first on #MathsRocks but whilst we mention it we may as well draw attention to the @NCETM version also. @nrichmaths and @NCETM are absolute gifts to any Primary Maths teacher. They take the concepts and provide deeper problem solving challenges which will stretch and challenge all children of any ability. However, the difficulty in using these sites is that it can sometimes be a challenge finding the right activity. These guides that nRich and NCETM provide solve that issue, allowing teachers to pinpoint the activities they need.

1

2

The links to the interactive pages can be found here:

nRich: https://nrich.maths.org/12662

NCETM: https://www.ncetm.org.uk/resources/41211

I really encourage you to save these documents/links as they will save many hours of your time. Have a great (final for most of you before a well-deserved week off) week! And remember – #MathsRocks!