Special Edition Mathematics Newsletter - Updates and news from your Learning Resource Consultants.
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Hello <<First Name>>,
The final month of the academic year is upon us and soon, for many of you, your thoughts will turn to the 3Rs (no, not reading, (w)riting and (a)rithmetic but rest, recuperation and relaxation)!
Just before the wind-down begins, we wanted to bring you this special edition of the LGfL newsletter focussing on MATHEMATICS.
Special Edition Mathematics Newsletter
Our newsletters generally feature a wide range of LGfL news, this edition is purely focussed on mathematics. It includes:
Mathematics survey (for primary, infant and junior schools)
We have created a simple maths survey for primary (infant, junior and all through primary) schools to complete regarding maths approaches within your school. We are looking to improve the support we offer our schools regarding the teaching of maths. In order to help with this, please visit the Google form to complete one form per setting (ideally this would be completed by the maths subject leader in conjunction with a member of SLT, so if this is not you please pass on to the relevant parties).
Click the "Complete Survey" button below to link to the form:
We recently launched the new and improved ‘Maths in the Real World’ resource on LGfL. The resource aims to inspire the evolution of pedagogy away from textbook-based theoretical maths exercises to a more immersive experience, where the learner is put in a range of engaging real life situations and can see the reason why maths is needed.
All of the resources have differentiated levels of support and include case studies of innovative ways in which they have been used to target specific learners as well as demonstrating how to enhance the materials further through the use of cloud based learning platforms.
The engaging real life situations range from 'Search and Rescue with HM Coastguard' where the maths involved is a matter of life and death, to the maths behind poor behaviour on a football pitch, to exploring the life expectancy of an iPhone and even contagion rates behind a biological outbreak of a virus.
The Maths at Home resource provides support for the less confident parents who wish to support their child with mathematical development at home but are aware that maths teaching methods have changed since they were at school and can therefore feel daunted at the prospect of offering support to their primary aged children.
A video has been made for every single national curriculum descriptor (for Key Stages 1 and 2), as well as an overview video for Early Years support. Each video is a snapshot of how many schools may teach the particular strand whilst giving examples of how parents could support their child at home. The videos are designed to feel like they are taking place on a table at home and encourage communication, conversation and lots of fun whilst working on them.
The new Maths Resource Maker from Busy Things helps you quickly create custom maths worksheets for use away from the screen and includes a save feature so you can keep your carefully crafted worksheets safe for future use. Your creations can be saved as PDFs in colour or outline making printing quick and easy. The Resource Maker can be found on the Welcome Screen at the bottom of the Teacher Tools area.
Busy Things are great at listening to feedback from their customers! They are now working on Resource Maker specifically for fractions and decimals after the summer, so this should be added towards the end of the year. Busy Graph Maker lets children enter data they have collected and see it quickly displayed in a colourful chart or graph. Children can easily switch between chart types to see their data displayed in different ways. You could start with simple pictograms and then move on to bar charts, line graphs and pie charts. Older children can even compare up to four data sets. There are ready-made templates to help you get started too.
Perfect for use at the front of the class, or with a group or 1:1 sessions at school or even at home – Busy Things Maths Flash Cards can be used for prompting discussion or testing recall of facts. There are currently nineteen sets testing knowledge on shapes, symmetry, measure and telling the time.
In addition, there are a multitude of maths games within Busy Things. The popular Miner Birds suite includes Miner Birds Addition and Subtraction with a wide variety of calculations customisable for children between the ages of 5 and 11.
Finally, do not overlook the worksheet area; there are worksheets on categorising shapes, ordering numbers, sorting common multiples and putting measurements on a scale to name just a few!
*If you are experiencing problems configuring Busy Things - please contact Busy Things directly on https://www.busythings.co.uk/contact-us/support. They will be able to support you in order that your pupils and teachers might access this resource from home.*
Just2easy have a range of tools to support with maths teaching. In J2Blast you can launch TtBlast (times tables) and SATsBlast KS1 & KS2 and the newly introduced SatsBlast KS3. (This new additional tool is located in the ‘Mathsweek London’ tab at the top). In all three versions of SATsBlast, the focus is on mental arithmetic; the pupils can click on the “have a practice” icon and this will generate a sliding toolbar from which they can choose the level of challenge or they can select “to take test”. As the teacher you can then view individual or class logs and quickly identify strengths and weaknesses within the cohort and their address misconceptions.
Also from the J2Launchpad you can access J2data (includes pictogram, chart, branch and databases), J2measure (provides visual tools to model how to use a protractor, ruler and compass) and J2code (including JIT – Turtle and Logo, both would be good for embedding directional language but Logo is also good for exploring properties of 2D shape and internal angles).
The Maths Toolbox is a flexible, interactive whiteboard resource providing visual representations of mathematical ideas. It can be used to aide children’s understanding and support schools who have adopted a concrete, pictorial, abstract (CPA) approach to their teaching of mathematics. There are a number of video clips in LGfL TV showcasing how to use the resources, click on the image below to be taken to an area with a series of Maths Toolbox help videos:
When setting up you maths display for the start of the new academic year, remember that Widgit has a “Maths Vocabulary Pack” in the Widgit Activities section. The vocabulary in the pack supports the programmes of study outlined in the national curriculum for Key Stages 1 & 2. Having the vocabulary supported by symbols, enables the pupils to get a clearer picture of what each word or phrase means.
LGfL TV has recently undergone a revamp. The content has been split in to channels including a dedicated 'Maths Channel'. Visit the Maths Channel to find case studies of the impact the resources have had in schools, trailers for maths resources and more.
Maths Training with LGfL
We have set out the dates for the beginning of next academic year (autumn term) on our training portal. Training is included as part of your Let's Get Digital Subscription for all LGfL teachers and other members of staff. Some sessions are held on a Tuesday at Camden CLC, whilst others are held at one of our partner venues or even LGfL HQ. You can find out more about the courses on offer and how to sign up here. Please share this with colleagues!
Those with an interest in maths may want to attend the ‘Using LGfL to Support the Core Subjects’ and they may also find value in attending a 'Cloud Training' session to learn more about the tools available to support them with assessment and data capture.
In addition, you can also book one of the Learning Resource Consultants (LRCs) to visit your school and deliver an INSET session, or sit with members of staff to map LGfL resources to your school's curriculum. We believe this is a perfect way to prepare for the term ahead and ensure you are making the most of the LGfL resources available to you! Please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a school visit from one of the team.
Our curriculum blog is updated weekly; it showcases resources from LGfL to help to support you in delivering the curriculum.
Please contact us to let us know what future blog posts you would like to read or indeed if you would like to write a guest blog post about the work you are doing in your school using LGfL resources! We are always keen to learn about the impact the resources have had on teaching and learning in the LGfL community.
Click here to subscribe to the curriculum blog, so that you never miss a post.
The Multiplication Tables Check (MTC)
Did your Year 4 pupils take The Multiplication Tables Check (MTC) this year? This key stage 2 assessment was taken by pupils at the end of year 4 (in June) in schools participating in the trial. The purpose of the MTC is to make sure the times tables knowledge is at the expected level.
If you're willing to share your (completely anonymous!) Multiplication Tables Check Data, Michael Tidd (on Twitter as @MichaelT1979 ; a Primary headteacher in Sussex and columnist for the TES) is collating the data from the Year 4 trial in order to give schools a head-start in getting a (very approximate) indication of outcomes nationally.
If this is of interest to your school, please submit your anonymous data by clicking on the button below: