15 February 2017

5 Maths Gems #69

Welcome to my 69th update from the world of Maths EduTwitter. This is where I share some of the latest ideas and resources for teaching maths.

1. New Diagnostic Questions Collections 
I use diagnosticquestions.com every week to create multiple choice quizzes for my classes. I particularly like the questions provided by AQA, OCR and Edexcel. Recently I've also been making use of the new questions provided by White Rose Maths Hub. These are designed for primary students but have worked well with my Year 7s.
I'm pleased to see that new themed collections from the UK Mathematics Trust will available soon. These will be helpful for both stretch and challenge in lessons and for UKMT maths challenge preparation.
2. Don's Blogs
I've written about Don Steward's resources many times. He is one of my favourite maths resource authors. His main blog donsteward.blogspot.co.uk is packed full of wonderful rich tasks for a wide range of topics. Don has a few other blogs that are also well worth exploring:
  • Median magic squares - I'm a big fan of using magic squares in maths lessons! This blog has magic squares for numerous topics ranging from straightforward to complex. They work well for both fluency development (eg fraction addition and negative numbers) and stretch and challenge.
Don also has a blog 'core pure 3 notes' with lovely clear slides and questions for A level and 'MEDIAN + ICT choices' where he shares lots of excellent websites and technologies.

Follow @Team_Maths1 on Twitter for regular updates of Don Steward's latest resources (this is just me on another account!).

3. Arrays
Ed Southall (@solvemymaths) made another video! This one is on multiplication arrays.

If you missed Ed's excellent polygons video, check out Gems 67.

4. Breaking Down the Big Questions
Thanks to Mr Chadburn (@mrchadburn) for sharing an interesting new resource idea. Some of the bigger GCSE questions require a number of different strands of knowledge and skill. He breaks these big questions down into these strands and has students practise each strand separately before bringing it all together to address the bigger problem. Mr Chadburn has blogged about this and shared two resources here.
There are lots of GCSE questions that would work well with this approach - this challenging question from a Churchill Maths paper is a good example.
I think this idea might work well at A level too.

5. crashMATHS
Website crashmaths.com shares GCSE and A level practice papers which are well worth a look. Through their Twitter account (@crashMATHS_CM) they will be sharing daily questions in the run up to GCSE exams.
It's been a busy few weeks. I've been doing some work for TES, helping to build topic-specific pages of recommended free resources - I will share these pages when they are published. Whilst doing this work I discovered that the new GCSE topic 'area under a graph' was rather under-resourced, so I created a couple of new resources: area under a graph and exam questions. They're nothing special but hopefully fill a gap.

I've also been busy adding lots of excellent new resource links to my resource libraries.

Did you catch my latest post? I wrote an article for teachwire.net about maths clubs for both primary and secondary schools.

My school is advertising two roles for a September 2017 start: Maths Teacher and Lead Practitioner. It's a great school and the members of the maths faculty are really lovely so if you live in Surrey or South London and you fancy trying something new, do get in touch. I'm happy to answer any questions if you're unsure about applying - email me at resourceaholic@gmail.com.

I hope to see lots of you at #mathsconf9 in Bristol next month. There are some fantastic workshops lined up. Most people are staying at the Travel Lodge - there will be a free shuttle bus from the hotel to the conference on the Saturday morning. If you're staying over, join us for drinks on the Friday night! Details to follow.

I'll leave you with this lovely map of mathematics by @DominicWalliman - thank you to @Mathematical_A for sharing this.

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