4 August 2020

Webinar: Planning for September

As I mentioned in my post about Warm Up Booklets, I will be hosting a webinar for NQT and RQT maths teachers at 11am and 2pm on 24th August. This webinar is being run by The Mathematical Association (the oldest subject association in the world! - I am very proud to be a trustee). The webinar is free, but there are limited spaces, so please book now to reserve your space (please ignore the irrelevant fields on the booking form - such as dietary requirements - this is a free online event and is available to all).

Please spread the word to teachers who you think might be interested (it's not exclusively for NQTs and RQTs, but that's the main audience I have in mind).

See you there!


UPDATE: both the 11am and 2pm webinars are now fully booked! If you missed out on a space, a recording will be available on the MA website.






30 July 2020

5 Maths Gems #133

Welcome to my 133rd gems post. This is where I share some of the latest news, ideas and resources for maths teachers.

1. New Websites
Diana Reeves (@mathsimum) has launched the first phase of her new website, mathsimum.com, where she has collated maths resources for teaching IGCSE. Many of these resources are useful for GCSE too. This is a superb website - really high quality and well organised. Time for me to retire, I think!

Another excellent new website is sketchcpd.com from Charlotte (@mrshawthorne7). On this website Charlotte shares her sketchnotes which summarise maths education books, podcasts and CPD workshops. These sketchnotes are both beautiful and incredibly helpful.

Devina Jethwa (@Miss_Jethwa) has been making lots of maths A level resources and has shared them on her website jethwamaths.com. This is an absolute treasure trove for A level teachers - resources include worksheets, practice papers, topic tests and calculator tutorials.


2. Equivalence
Thank you to @MrMcI1 for sharing an excellent set of fact families resources which he designed to accompany the White Rose Scheme of Work.


A related task was created by @McGuirea499, shown below. What equations can you make? This is a great example of a 'low floor high ceiling' task.
I love the video Mr McGuire made to go with this. 

 

 Check out more videos on his Youtube Channel.

3. New Tasks
"Look at @giftedHKO's website" should be a standing item in my gems posts, as I seem to feature her resources almost every time I blog! Her latest brilliant contributions include resources for circle theorems, perimeters of semi-circles, proportion with squares and cubes, loci and numeracy.



4. Quadratics
Here's a great task and video 'making links with quadratics' from @McGuirea499


5. Order of Operations
Thanks to Jenna Sanderson (@MissJennaMaths) for creating a task for teaching the priority of operations. She made this after watching my Topics in Depth workshop on this topic, which is available to view on my CPD channel.

I like the way Jenna has worked through the solutions using vinculums too:



Update
In my recent post about warm up booklets I mentioned that I will be running a free webinar for NQT and RQT maths teachers in August. If you know someone who might be interested in this, check my blog on Monday as I'm hoping that's when tickets will be made available.

Twitter maths teachers might want to take part in #mathsjournalclub which is making a comeback on 17th August. I really enjoyed this Twitter chat when it originally ran, from summer 2015 to summer 2016. Everyone is welcome to take part - it's a very good way to start engaging on Twitter if you've recently joined. You just need to make sure you've read the piece of research beforehand!

Image

Another activity that maths teachers can take part in this summer is Clarissa Grandi's (@c0mplexnumber) ‘Introduction to Geometric Art’ Zoom course. This live online course takes place on five consecutive Saturdays in August, starting Saturday 1st August, from 11am to 1pm. It's currently sold out, but you can message Clarissa to get on the waiting list, and the course will run again in the autumn.

Also note that La Salle have now put tickets on sale for #mathsconf24 which will take place online on Saturday 3rd October. If you'd like to speak at this conference then you can submit a proposal. At the last La Salle conference only 24% of workshops had a female speaker - this is disproportionately low for the profession, and happened because not many women put themselves forward to speak. So I really want to encourage new speakers - including lots of females - to submit a workshop. 

Finally, check out this Frayer Model display from @AlexB19899. Alex says he introduced "5 minute Frayer time" last year. Pairs of pupils use dictionaries to try to complete their own Frayer models, before completing one together as a class using this display. He said it was great to hear their examples and non-examples.





27 July 2020

Warm Up Booklets

Over the last few days I've been preparing a webinar that I'll be running for NQT and RQT maths teachers in late August. In this webinar I plan to talk about routines and resources when teaching in 'bubbles'.

Pandemic rules dictate that most of us won't have our own classroom for a while. Instead we'll be moving around school between lessons. I've been a 'nomadic' teacher before, when I was part-time after my children were born and I didn't have my own classroom, so I have some experience of carrying my equipment around all day. It's not ideal!


I used to find moving classroom between lessons added an extra level of challenge to an already challenging job. A smooth start to the lesson (including greeting students at the door with a calm, un-frazzled smile and inviting them into a fully prepared classroom) is hard to achieve when you have to fight your way through a crowded corridor and then wait five minutes for the computer to switch on. 

There are additional challenges this year though - teachers are not allowed to move around classrooms, and our students aren't meant to move around during lessons either. For me, this means I'll either introduce new ways of distributing handouts (certainly possible) or I'll eliminate handouts altogether (desirable, and better for the environment, though difficult for some topics). 

At my school we plan to use laptops to get round the issue of waiting for computers to log in at the start of each lesson. So when we arrive in a classroom, where our students will be sat waiting for us, we will just have to plug our laptop into the screen and then we can get started. Even though this should be super quick, there will still be a short delay before we can get a starter activity on the board. Our students may have already been sitting there for a couple of minutes when we arrive (because we'll have been teaching maths to a different year group in a different corridor). I hate wasted time in the classroom and the thought of them just sitting there unoccupied makes me sad. So I have been toying with numerous ideas and my chosen solution is...

the warm up booklet!

This is nothing new or original or particularly exciting, but it is something I haven't done before. 

I usually like to plan each lesson starter in response to how students got on in the previous lesson. Since I blogged about 'regular recall' starters back in 2018 (see Gems 87) I've been using that format with most classes. As well as the important retrieval practice, I like it that this format features a 'last lesson' element which allows me to recap the last thing I taught and address any misconceptions that arose. Because these starters are responsive, I plan them the day before I teach the lesson. 

I'm going to have to live without the 'last lesson' element for now though, because until the bubble teaching is over, I have decided to plan all of my starters in advance, at the start of every half-term.

So this is how it will work:
  1. Hand out warm up booklets in the first lesson of the year.
  2. Students keep these inside the back cover of their exercise book (attached with treasury tags).
  3. Students start working on their daily warm up before I even arrive (in theory!).
  4. Students are under strict instructions not to move onto the next day's questions (having used booklets in my teaching before, I know this can be an issue!).
  5. When I arrive I set up my laptop and do the register while they finish their warm up.
  6. I have my own copy of the booklet which I put under the visualiser to go through the answers, while students self-mark.

Good plan, right? 

You know what they say about plans...

Anyway, I've now made my booklets for my Year 7 class, which are almost entirely made up of old SATs questions. This means that all my Year 7 warm ups for Autumn 1 consist of retrieval questions for topics taught in Years 1 to 6. Huge thanks to David Morse because I used the SATs resources on his website Maths4Everyone.com to make these. 

I've tried to make each warm up accessible and relatively short (in order to maximise lesson time). I haven't met my class yet so I have no idea if I've pitched it right, but I expect my class to be similar to the Year 7 class I had last year, so I have an idea of what level they might be working at. There's a page of puzzles at the back in case I have anyone super speedy (these puzzles are taken from mathinenglish.com). If this plan goes well and I decide to make another booklet for Autumn 2, I won't do it until October half-term, once I've got to know the class.

I've shared an editable version of this booklet on TES in case teachers want to borrow and edit it. If you print double-sided, it's only seven sheets per student. And an advantage of doing this upfront is that it will save time when things get really busy.


Of course, I do not claim to have invented starter booklets. I just haven't used them before and feel that now (during weird global pandemic times) is a good time to start using them. And because I spent a few hours making one for my Year 7 class, I thought it might be worth sharing.

Here are a couple more starter booklets that are worth a look if you are thinking of doing this:


 



The 5-a-day resources from Corbett Maths might work well for those of you looking to make this kind of booklet for GCSE classes too (I know some schools have already been doing this for years!).

I hope this helps save teachers some time when getting ready for September. 




19 July 2020

5 Maths Gems #132

Welcome to my 132nd gems post. This is where I share some of the latest news, ideas and resources for maths teachers.

1. Primary Maths Guidance
The Department for Education recently released a set of Mathematics Guidance documents for the Key Stage 1 and 2 national curriculum. The team of experts behind this really know their stuff, so it's high quality material. Both primary teachers and secondary maths teachers should familiarise themselves with the content, which includes teaching guidance, representations, language structures and example assessment questions. 
Helpfully, the DfE has also released a set of accompanying videos. I expect that these excellent videos will be used in a lot of in-school primary CPD in the new academic year.

   


2. Famous Mathematicians Display
George Stone (@DrStoneMaths) shared a new Famous Mathematicians Display, which is based on ⁦‪@MrYoungMaths‬⁩'s version from TES. It now features twenty-eight mathematicians from past to present, including more female and BAME mathematicians.  


I have added this to my displays page which features loads of excellent displays for maths departments.

3. A Level
Thank you to Susan Whitehouse (@Whitehughes) for pointing me towards the new website mathematico.org. This might be a site to watch for A-level resources in future. It's still being populated at the moment but do take a look at what's already on there.

Susan Whitehouse has also updated her folders of A level resources on Google Drive, removing references to old specification modules, adding in a few new resources, deleting duplicate resources and tidying up. I have used Susan's resources in my A level teaching since my NQT year. If you teach A level and don't know Susan's resources, do check them out.
4. Mean
I'd never thought about how to create a visualisation of the mean until I read Ed Southall's book Yes, But Why?. I think this is a particularly powerful visualisation, so it was good to see a very clear animated version of it created by Tomas Alley (@MrAlleyMaths).

       
Check out @MrAlleyMaths's Twitter feed for more visualisations and resources.

5. New Tasks
Miss Konstantine (@giftedHKO) has produced some lovely resources recently - check out her blog mathshko.com to see what she's been up to. 

Examples of her work include this task on area and perimeter:
and this task on metric measures:
and this one on factors:

Update
This term was incredibly challenging for many of us, so it's a huge relief that the holidays are now here. I'm so happy to have a break from computer screens and endless online meetings, as I'm sure many of you are too. I also now have only two days left homeschooling my daughters - it has been both a joy and a challenge. 

I definitely have a lot more work to do in the holidays than I've ever had before - as school timetabler, it seems that my to do list is never ending. But I feel excited about September already. I love meeting new classes and welcoming new Year 7s. But before all that excitement, time for a rest. My husband - who has been working in heavy duty PPE since March - has two weeks off from his hospital in early August. So my family is off to Center Parcs, and I can't wait - I booked it back in January so am very pleased that this holiday is still able to go ahead.

Here are a few things you might have missed in recent weeks:
  • I wrote a post 'Catching Up?' which I hope provides some reassurance to teachers, as well as lots of practical advice. In this post I mentioned the Power Maths Practice Books from White Rose - since then I've bought these for my daughters and found them to be brilliant. They're only £1.99 each and are excellent maths workbooks for primary children.
  • Teachers who are already planning their lessons for September might find my post Year 7 Maths Activities helpful as it contains lots of tasks that might be suitable in the first week when you are getting to know your class.
  • @HelenHindle1 ran a workshop on mixed attainment maths teaching which you can watch here.
  • @DrStoneMaths wrote a great post 'The limit does not exist' which is about teaching differentiation from first principles at A level.
  • @MrDraperMaths wrote a post 'Applied Pythagoras' sharing some brilliant Pythagoras questions.
  • @InformalTeacher wrote a Haiku for every workshop at #mathsconf23! I also enjoyed his poem 'Twas the day before summer'.
  • The NCTEM is getting a new website and it's worth reading Richard Perring's (@LearningMaths) thread which features lots of CPD and resources that are worth downloading before they disappear.
  • This weekend there's been a renewed interest in the Is this Prime? game by @christianp which I have loved for many years - it was the winner of one of my 2016 Gem Awards. People who are new to Twitter or new to maths teaching might find it helpful to read back through each of my Gem Awards posts to see some of the highlights of the resources and ideas shared in my previous posts that they may have missed.
  • Finally, thank to @dhabecker for sharing this multiplication game:



 Enjoy your summer, maths teachers! Stay safe.


12 July 2020

Catching Up?

There's been a lot of panic in the media about 'an entire generation' being behind in maths. We know this is not the case. In maths we are lucky to be way ahead of the game with online learning (we are blessed with Hegarty Maths and numerous other excellent systems), and I'm not convinced that students who have completed the online work set on these platforms (or elsewhere) throughout lockdown will be particularly far behind. And how is 'behind' even being defined here anyway?

Admittedly some students have done absolutely no maths whatsoever for the last few months. In secondary schools, where most students should be able to access work at home independently, these 'non-engagers' mainly fit into two categories 1. those who have struggled to access the work due to a lack of devices at home, or no quiet workspace and 2. those who have chosen to stay in bed/play games/watch Netflix/do TikTok dances all day instead of doing their maths work. The former group are a concern, but schools will have been doing all they can to support these students during lockdown (providing paper resources, lending school laptops etc). The latter group are likely to be the exact same students who choose to do the minimum possible during normal times too, so it's pretty much just been business as usual for them. 

Either way, we all know that it's perfectly possibly to catch these students up. In some schools, it's pretty normal for a maths teacher to take over a class at the start of Year 11 who haven't had a proper maths teacher since Year 8. They can catch up. We all know students who do very little work in the whole of Key Stage 3. They can catch up. Every year pretty much every student we teach seems to have forgotten everything over summer. They can catch up. Admittedly we face challenges, particularly with the current Year 10s. And we face complications in our schools - it's not ideal that many of us will be temporarily losing our usual rooms and teaching group structures. 

But it's all achievable, with a bit of hard work (from both us and our students). People need to calm down with this 'entire generation behind' story - it doesn't help anyone. I wish they would start trusting that teachers can handle this. This isn't the first time we've had gaps to fill. 

Anyway, as the weird times continue, I thought it might help to share a few of the questions that maths teachers have been asking lately. I know this is too late for the teachers who are already on their summer holidays, but I can't be the only one who still has a week to go!

1. What transition materials can we give to Year 6s who will be joining us in September?
Sparx have made their Secondary Ready online course freely available until September. I think parents of Year 6 students would really appreciate knowing that this is available. It's not too late to tell them about it.

In Gems 129 I also shared a lovely induction booklet designed by @MissJHE_, full of puzzles and activities and getting to know their new maths teachers. There's still time to share something like this with your incoming Year 7s if you haven't already.

2. Some parents are asking us to continue setting work for our students over summer. What can we give them?
Many students will not be going on holiday this summer and will be at home more than usual, so some parents at our school have asked for summer work to help them keep busy in the months ahead. We don't want to set any compulsory summer work for our students - many of them will need a break from screens as much as we do - but through our newsletter we have made some suggestions, including the following:
In case you're interested in how we present this information to parents, this is the page that is going to appear in our school newsletter this week.

3. How can we make sure our Year 11s are prepared for A level in September?
There's an abundance of resources available for this, and many have featured in my Gems posts over the last four months. Packages available include those from the AMSP, SAMI and Colin Hegarty. Most Year 11s will already be engaged in this bridging work. Any Year 11 who has been sitting around doing nothing since March may not be right for A level maths - a good work ethic and an enthusiasm for maths are both key to success on this course. Every year an element of early testing and intervention is necessary, and this year will be no different.

4. I need more work for my own children. What's available?
My daughters are in Year 1 and Year 3 and their schools have done a fantastic job during lockdown. I've wanted both daughters to do a little bit extra maths throughout, so have found a few additional resources. We will continue to use a few of these every now and then over summer so they don't forget everything! Here is just a small selection of the resources available:
  • The NCETM has produced maths videos for primary children which feature excellent explanations and activities.
  • White Rose Maths also has a fantastic home learning package which can be accessed for £20. Each daily video has an accompanying worksheet. 
  • White Rose Maths has produced a range of free work booklets for parents and children to use over the summer.
  • Corbett Primary 5-a-day is great for retrieval practice. My Year 3 daughter does the Bronze ones and loves them!
  • My older daughter also loves Times Tables Rockstars, which can be bought directly by families for children whose schools don't subscribe. Unfortunately Numbots is not yet available to families, otherwise it would have been top of my list.
  • There are lots of great apps for young children including Numberblocks, DragonBox Numbers, Hit The Button and Sumaze Primary. And for secondary students there's Sumaze, DragonBox, IXL and plenty more.
White Rose Maths Parent Workbooks

Throughout lockdown both my daughters used English workbooks that I'd bought them online - I found these really helpful. It was good to give them a break from screens every now and then. I had also bought them some maths workbooks aimed at their age but they were really dull, and I don't think they were anywhere near as good as their English equivalents so we barely used them. In hindsight perhaps I should have bought the Power Maths practice books instead.

5. Do I need to re-write my schemes of work for September?
To some extent this depends on what you chose to do during lockdown. My school kept delivering new content throughout lockdown (mainly using Hegarty Maths) so we are in the same place topic-wise as we would have been anyway. Of course we will have some students who didn't do much, and there will be some who did all the work but picked up some misconceptions along the way. At my school we will be addressing this by revisiting our 'lockdown topics' using our usual retrieval starters. Where I usually do the 'last topic, last lesson, last week, last year' style retrieval activities, my department now has a pre-determined list of the lockdown topics that must be included in these starters. And we expect that we might have to spend a bit longer on these activities. It's hard to know at the moment, but we will quickly work it all out using our professional judgement once we have our classes in front of us. 

For those schools who didn't deliver any new content during lockdown and only set revision for students, presumably a scheme of work re-jig will be necessary. And for those who are now having to teach in mixed attainment tutor groups due the the 'year group bubble' rules, check out Helen Hindle's website Mixed Attainment Maths for some guidance and example lessons.

We have a lot of preparation to do for next year and we know it will be a challenge. There's always something to keep us on our toes though, right? Whatever situation you're in, just remember: our students will catch up. We've got this. 








5 July 2020

5 Maths Gems #131

Welcome to my 131st gems post. This is where I share some of the latest news, ideas and resources for maths teachers.

1. Self Marking Sheets
Phil Rhodes (@Philmaths314) has shared a free set of Self Marking Google Sheets. As the name suggests, these are sheets that mark themselves. ⁦‪You can assign your class these Self Marking Google Sheets in Google Classroom. The site is very easy to use: choose a sheet, create your own copy and then assign to your pupils. When they input answers, they get an instant score.

2. A Level Knowledge Organisers
I am quite often asked about A level knowledge organisers, so it's great that there are now some available for teachers who wish to use these. 

Thank you to @Lucyjc1612 for sharing knowledge organisers for mechanics and statistics.
And thanks to @misschakera for sharing knowledge organisers for pure topics. 

I have now added these to my A level resource libraries and my Knowledge Organisers page.

Thank you also to Jake Goodman and Rachel Mahoney who emailed me some Key Stage 3 and 4 knowledge organisers for inclusion on the Knowledge Organisers page. 

3. Pedagogical Prompts
@DanielPearcy has published a new website danpearcy.com containing collections of tasks, prompts and resources.
Dan introduced his Pedagogy Prompts at the Seneca conference yesterday. These are designed to prompt discussion amongst maths teachers, to help develop teachers' pedagogical content knowledge. Dan suggests that discussion of these prompts might form the first ten minutes of a maths department meeting.
For the above prompt, Dan suggests the following questions:
1. Which formula do you use for the cosine rule? A formula that isn’t listed above?
2. Why might you stress the importance of number 2?
3. Is there a context in which you would consider teaching number 3? Is it a problem that this doesn’t appear in textbooks or formula books?

I found this really interesting. When I teach the cosine rule I always verbalise it only using the third formula, but have never seen it written down like this.

4. Planning Tool
Thank you to @timdolan who has created a planning tool to help maths teachers think through a topic or series of lessons before they plan in more detail. 
5. New Resources
Here are some new resources and activities that have recently been shared on Twitter:


Blog Posts to Read
  • My favourite maths blogger @Mr_Rowlandson has shared a brilliant new blog post about posing questions in different directions.
  • Check out @jnovakowski38's blog post summarising the best places to go for different sets of virtual manipulatives, along with presentations and articles to support the use of them. I have featured most of these websites in my gems posts over the years but it's great to have them all in one place. The only thing I'd add to this list is the wonderful MathsBot.com

  • @InteractMaths shared a post with a range of carefully thought out median and range tasks.

CPD
Complete Mathematics Conference
Thank you to La Salle for sharing all the recordings from #mathsconf23 on their website. If you want to keep track of what you've watched, this session tracker shared by @MrWilliamsMaths is very helpful.
ATM CPD
The ATM has been publishing short CPD videos on its website. One example is The Words We Use with Jenni Ingram which is a seven minute exploration of the use of language in mathematics and how small changes can alter meaning. 

Senenca Conference
I really enjoyed the three hour Seneca conference on Saturday morning. It was a great length and format. The short talks were a fantastic way to showcase new speakers and - in a very rare thing for a maths conference - there was a good balance of men and women speaking. I spoke about Lowest Common Multiple - this was a mini-topics in depth presentation. You can watch it here, along with the other excellent presentations. 

Do check out the Padlet shared by Emma Bell (@El_Timbre) during this conference.  This will be of particular interest to teachers who teach GCSE re-sit. Emma shared her incredible work on 'The Focused 15' - fifteen interconnected topics to focus on with re-sit students.



Also check out the If The World Were 100 People video that Emma showed during her presentation. I have blogged about a few '100 people' resources in the past but this one was new to me.

My CPD Videos
The Order of Operations Topic in Depth presentation I recorded with Craig Barton back in February has now been published by TES. You can find it on my CPD Playlist, alongside all my other CPD videos.

Update
Two weeks left! I can't wait for the summer holidays. It has been a challenging term all round. 

My school is running our annual personal development week next week - this means I haven't had to set any maths work, but there's lots of other stuff going on including a virtual Sports Day and a Discovery Day, where I get to run a live lesson teaching students a load of fascinating stuff about banknotes (my chosen topic, which I know a lot about from my previous career). In the last week of term the maths lessons are back on but we also have our students coming in for end of term tutor group assemblies, which is really exciting. We're also doing end of year reports (consisting mainly of form tutor comments) which I have whole school responsibility for, so that will keep me busy. 

My own children have a lot going on too. Neither of my daughters (Year 1 and Year 3) have been back at school (the little one goes to an infants' school which couldn't accommodate Year 1), but their schools have planned some lovely end of term stuff, so they're happy. In terms of their maths, my Year 1 daughter is still doing the daily White Rose lessons, as well as using a few apps like Hit the Button and DragonBox. My Year 3 daughter does the White Rose lessons too, as well as Times Tables Rockstars. I recently realised that the Bronze 5-a-Day sheets from Corbettmaths Primary are perfect for her too (I don't know why I didn't think of that earlier!) so that's a late addition to our daily routine.

I will leave you with this fantastic video 'The Story of the Vinculum' from @jamestanton. It's brilliant. 







21 June 2020

5 Maths Gems #130

Welcome to my 130th gems post. This is where I share some of the latest news, ideas and resources for maths teachers.

I'm writing this post the day after #mathsconf23. This huge online conference was a great success and I'll say a bit about it at the end of this post. 

1. Quadratic Formula
Andy Lutwyche (@andylutwyche) shared a new resource for teaching the quadratic formula. Note how the questions change - in the last few, students are asked to work backwards.
The idea was based on this exam question that was shared by @MontaigneMaths


2. Primary Goal-Free Problems
I originally saw the idea for goal-free problems in Craig Barton's first book. If you're not familiar with them, the idea is to remove the 'question' from a maths problem, making the problem more open and accessible - the approach is explained very clearly in Clare Sealy's post here.

Thank you to Jean Knapp (@MissJK24319629) for sharing a blog post on primary 'goal free' problems where she reflects on the last sixteen months of use and innovation trials. The post includes a big accompanying resource for Key Stage 1 and 2. 

3. Calculated Colouring
Thank you to Claire Clay (@cclay8) for sharing a set of calculating colouring activities that she has made, covering a range of topics from angles to algebra.

4. Squares
Sudeep from Boss Maths (@boss_maths) shared a problem that I found really interesting. Although the answer can be worked out mentally in a few seconds at a fairly young age, older students (and often teachers!) can totally over-complicate it. Don't read the replies under the tweet before you've looked at the question!

On the subject of squares, check out this blog post from @blatherwick_sam which has a great sequence of questions on squares.

5. Templates
Thanks to Nathan Day (@nathanday314) for sharing a lovely set of free editable templates based on Craig Barton‬⁩'s book Reflect, Expect, Check, Explain and online courses. This includes templates for retrieval starters, example-problem pairs, low stakes quizzes, intelligent practice, SSDD problems, diagnostic questions, and UKMT questions. Check out this thread to see the examples.




Bonus Lockdown Resources
  • Textbook publisher Elmwood is currently providing free access to its Key Stage 1 to 5 maths textbooks until the end of August. I signed up for Key Stage 3 and got online access to textbooks and homework books for Years 7 - 9. 
  • MEI is currently running Calculator Crunch 2020 - check out the hashtag #CalculatorCrunch for the daily questions, aimed at students in Year 6 and Year 7.
  • Emily Fleming from the charity SAMI sent me an email about a new A level Bridging Course aimed at Year 11s planning to take A level maths in September. This is free and looks amazing. Check out my tweet about this for more information.
  • Thank you to the ATM for sharing a series of free 'Maths Snacks' videos for children to use at home during lockdown. They are a mixture of tasks, puzzles, challenges, and games, selected to support and enrich the mathematics taught at school. Many can be accessed by very young children, with a little bit of adult support, and all of them are relevant to pupils across the whole school age-range. You can tell a lot of expertise lies behind these carefully crafted activities. 

CPD
Last week I was interviewed live on YouTube by Tom Manners (@Mannersmatics). I had the opportunity to talk viewers through some of the lesser known features of my website (there's a lot that people don't know about!). You can watch the interview on Tom's website
TES also released the fourth Topics in Depth workshop that I recorded with Craig Barton. It's on the Order of Operations. It's not on Youtube yet but can currently be watched for free on Craig's CPD Platform.

#mathsconf23
I very much missed seeing all of my usual conference buddies in person yesterday, but La Salle did an incredible job of hosting an absolutely brilliant online conference. The sessions on offer were all top quality, and it was great that the conference reached such a wide audience, include a large number of international delegates.

I strongly believe that maths teachers benefit from CPD on how to teach specific topics, so I delivered a session on teaching exact trig values. In this session we looked at the GCSE specification (including the rationale for the inclusion of this topic in the 'new' GCSE), how this topic is assessed, and how to structure and deliver the teaching of this topic. Thank you to everyone who attended my workshop, and particular thanks to @arzzax who was listening from Australia and shared the popular 'half-square' idea in this tweet

If you missed my workshop then you will be able to catch up on it when La Salle shares the whole conference online.

Do have a listen to the post-conference podcast, which I recorded straight after #mathsconf23 in a Zoom call with Craig Barton. 

If you enjoyed #mathsconf23, or you missed out, then do check out Seneca's three hour maths conference on 4th July. My next task is to write my workshop for that!

I will leave you with these puzzles, shared by @MathigonOrg. There are loads like this on Philipp's beautiful website.