Monthly Archive: September 2010

0

Help save a life

On 24th October I’m doing to the Great South Run to raise money for the British Heart Foundation and in memory of my mother who sadly passed away suddenly and unexpectedly last year from heart failure. It’s a 10 mile run through the streets of Southsea and Portsmouth passing the naval dockyards and the south parade pier. 21,000 runners will...

2

A kinaesthetic approach to teaching loci

This fantastic teaching idea came from Katie K: Found a really good way of teaching Loci for Kinesthetic learners! Give all students in the class a post-it note with blue tack on the back. Then draw a dot on the whiteboard and get them all to stick their post-its 10 cm away from the dot but not touching each other then...

6

A sequences alternative to ‘how many matchsticks’

Sequences. You build up a pattern of squares from matchsticks, getting the pupils to fill in a table of number of squares vs number of matchsticks. You ask them to spot the term-to-term and position-to-term (nth term) rules and feel great if they do. I’ve taught this lesson a few times at differing ability levels this year and the other...

2

Curvy Areas- because every maths teacher needs NRich Maths

If you haven’t seen the NRich Maths website where have you been?! It’s a fantastic source of enriching activities. It’s usually my first port of call when I’m looking for ‘something a bit different’ for my own classes. Many of the resources are interactive and look great on the interactive white board. Each month NRich publishes a ‘virtual magazine’ which...

4

Getting across what an nth term rule is

On Friday I had one of those ‘this is why I went into teaching lessons’ where everything seemed to come together. What made the experience even more satisfying was the fact that if you’d have been there for the first 10 minutes you’d probably have thought that the lesson was well down the path towards crashing and burning. The learning...

2

Dazzle your data handling class with an infographic project

Infographics are: fun, informative, inspiring, thought-provoking, knowledge-enhancing, stimulating and above all, engaging. If you don’t know what an infographic is, it’s the fusion of graphic design, with data handling. An infographic takes some data and turns it into an attractive poster which uses a variety of data representation techniques to communicate the message that emerges from the data. A nice...

2

Carrot, stick, both or something else?

How do you motivate students? How do you get them wanting to learn? Carrot, stick, both, or something else? What does the science say? There’s a great video on Youtube of an animation of a talk Dan Pink gave explaining what science says about motivating people. The video talks about motivational strategies within the world of work, getting adults working...

3

2 great ways to start a data handling topic

We’ve all been there. Beginning a data handling topic, trying to motivate the pupils with the importance and power of data. I’ve tried quite a few things over the last year with varying degrees of success. Here are my current top two: Facebook Facts Infographics like the one below are a great way to engage pupils, particularly if they are...

0

Geogebra resources go live!

Have you ever used Geogebra? It’s a fantastic piece of free software that you can use to enhance you maths teaching. It combines graph-plotting capabilities with dynamic geometry; think Omnigraph and The Geometer’s Sketchpad in one program that is easier to use, more intuitive and looks a lot better! I’m certainly in the ‘beginner-to-medium ability user’ cateogory myself but am...

0

Investigation of y = mx + c

If you believe in constructivist teaching, aka you are on the same page as Piaget, then you’ll think that rather than telling the kids how the coefficients m and c translate a straight line on a graph, they should work it out for themselves through a structured investigation and self-discovery. Download the worksheets of such an investigation here. The investigation...

0

Cuboid volume challenge

If you have a 20cm by 20cm piece of paper and you have to use it to make a box, what would be the dimensions of the box with the maximum volume? This worksheet is a take on this traditional old classic lesson idea that combines some good mensuration, nets and calculation work with the spirit of investigation. To extend...