3 January 2016

5 Maths Gems #46

Happy New Year and welcome to my 46th gems post. This is where I share five maths teaching ideas I've seen on Twitter. 

1.  2016 Starters
Thanks to Dave Gale (@reflectivemaths) for sharing loads of great activities based on the number 2016 in his post '2016 Starters'.
2. Star Wars Puzzles
I've mentioned Emma's (@El_Timbre) puzzles before but they deserve another mention because she's now published a brilliant set of puzzles with a Star Wars theme... You can find these puzzles here, and while you're visiting Emma's blog do take a look at her EMMAths Awards 2015 too.
3. Order of Operations
Teaching the order of operations? This gif will definitely make your students laugh! Thanks to @k8nowak for sharing.
4.  New GCSE Exam Questions
You've probably already seen these, but if not then you don't want to miss them... Mel (@Just_Maths) has produced a set of resources for those of us teaching the new GCSE. She has collated GCSE questions by topic from the sample materials of all exam boards. Thank you Mel! Very helpful.
5. The Progression of Multiplication
Do watch this six minute video about multiplication from Graham Fletcher (@gfletchy). It's excellent.

I'm not one for New Year's Resolutions - in fact, this image from parenting blog hurrahforgin.com sums it up nicely.
Saying that, if I were to make resolutions relating to my professional life as opposed to my personal life, then this graphic from @sylviaduckworth provides a really nice approach.
Over Christmas...
In case you missed them, here's the three blog posts I wrote over Christmas:

If you teach A level then you'll probably appreciate these posts about the upcoming changes to the specifications:

Over the Christmas holidays I spent many many hours working my way through a mountain of mock exam marking. To be honest I'm slightly concerned by some of my Year 11's results so I now need to do something pretty spectacular to improve the situation... Help!

Over Christmas I've absolutely loved spending lots of quality time with my daughters. I'll really miss them when term starts.
My youngest - 1.5 years old and still hasn't
slept through the night! What a monkey.

Have a great first week back at work! Thanks for reading.


  1. I am equally worried about my Y11 - weakest group I've ever had and under lots of pressure to get Cs! Would love to exchange ideas on how best to spend this term!

    1. I'm in a unusual situation in that my new school is doing the Linked Pair pilot (so I'm teaching 'Applications' for the first and last time). Our Year 11s do 2 maths GCSEs but we only get 3 lessons a week which isn't enough time to properly cover all the content. Everything is rushed! My class (set 4 out of 11) are targeting As and Bs - most got Bs and Cs in the mock (and a few Ds, which worried me). Some got only 30% which was quite a shock to me having moved from a grammar school where everyone got an A or A*. I'm going to spend this term teaching content that we haven't covered yet - not ideal when really I need to go back and re-teach the fundamentals, but I hate the idea of them sitting the exam having only covered half the topics. I'd love to hear what you plan to do with yours - must be stressful to have a 'borderline' group.