A quick blog to share free set of pie chart resources, require no-prep printable downloads, that we produced when NumberLoving joined up with LittleStreams in collaboration.
The worksheets produced by Littlestreams help introduce how to calculate angles in order to construct Pie Charts. Once pupils are able to construct, you can move them into completing the NumberLoving Treasure Hunt. This requires pupils to interpret pie charts; finding amounts from pie chart sectors and includes questions like those included in Higher EdExcel and AQA GCSE 9-1 Maths papers.
The two resources can be downloaded for free using the links below;
LittleStreams drawing pie charts worksheets Free Download
Check out our Teacher Hack blog post below which will mean no excuses when pupils say “I haven’t got a protractor”! Maths Teacher Hack- Part 1
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A quick free logic puzzle for our favourite time of year Valentines Day, we are NumberLoving after all!
Download the full resource below: this includes the option of clue cards for traditional mystery or a worksheet option with built in two way table and the solution.
Look out for more freebies this week as we share the Number Love!
We would love to hear your ideas! Get in touch via @numberloving or NumberLoving’s Facebook page!
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Effective use of department time, this is a daunting task for a newly appointed head of department! So like most when I first took this responsibility I made sharing good practice (SGP) a permanent agenda item as one way of continuous professional development. However, I soon realised that this wasn’t meeting the needs of professional development for the team, all of which were at different stages of their career. The sharing good practice item too often had become one member of the department “sharing a resource” they have used or ‘found’ recently. For many reasons I decided to keep the format of SGP (rota basis throughout the department). So instead of replacing it, I added other activities to department meetings that I felt actually resulted in discussions of good practice in terms of the teaching of Mathematics. In this post I describe three tried and tested strategies for keeping the objective of deeper understanding at the forefront of your departments’ planning and preparation.
First: Why the importance in the Teaching of Mathematics
One of the key message from “Mathematics: made to measure” (read it here) is our responsibility to enable all pupils to develop a conceptual understanding of the mathematics they learn, its structures and relationships and fluent recall of mathematical knowledge and skills in order to equip them to solve familiar problems as well as tackle creatively the more complex and unfamiliar ones that lie ahead. The Ofsted 2012 descriptors found on page 30 of this summary of Mathematics’ reports (another good read) are certainly still relevant when discussing teaching approaches with your department. One element for outstanding quality of teaching is; “Teaching is rooted in the development of all pupils’ conceptual understanding of important concepts and progression within the lesson and over time. It enables pupils to make connections between topics and see the ‘big picture’”.
The Bigger Picture
This is a simple concept in which you ask the department to work in pairs during department time, to consider particular topics/skills on three different levels.
1. Method; what is the method, the skill in its most basic form? Are there any generalisations (known by some as rules grrr)?
2. Understanding; How do you teach for understanding? How do you lead the pupils to make their own generalisations?
3. The bigger picture; What are the applications? Are there any links to other topics?
This really is a great for unpicking your departments’ approaches to individual topics in detail. Often revealing gaps in staff knowledge and understanding (particularly NQT/RQT’s), and can even reveal if staff have been oblivious using and teaching tricks just because they were taught that way. How many of your department now how to conceptually explain the division of a fraction by a fraction. This NumberLoving resource, download for free from here, includes a number of examples such as operating with indices,operating with fractions, standard form and a blank grid (probably the most useful) which you can adapt to suit any topic coming up in your scheme of work.
How do you teach yours?
This second approach requires some forward planning, and forethought from your department members. Prior to the meeting give each member of the department a “How do you teach yours” sheet on the topic you will be discussing. Here is an example of what this might look like for the topics of multiplication and division.
As you can see the department members are asked to complete each indicating how they would teach the pupils, prior to the meeting. Once at the meeting methods, approaches are discussed and debated. This naturally leads to an agreement of what is the best way to teach for understanding. Once agreed on the best approach this can be documented as shown in the example on the right.
This department activity could easily be adapted for any subject area. I have provided three examples of “How do you teach yours” to help get you started. Download it for free here.
This can be done with any text or report which you feel will aid discussion. With a pre-determined focus direct the department towards the book/report, or even better provide a paper copy in their tray. Department should read this in preparation for the meeting.
Nix the tricks
As described on the website this book is “filled with alternatives to the shortcuts so prevalent in mathematics education and explains exactly why the tricks are so bad for understanding math”. I would highly recommend providing each member of your department with this book. This makes for both a great discussion point and a handy resource for alternative methods. I have also found it useful as a point of referral when during work samples I have observed potential teaching of tricks and not of understanding. This book can be purchased online or downloaded as a pdf for free from the Nix the Tricks website here.
I hope this has provided some ideas of how to promote continuous professional development rooted around the effective teaching of mathematics!
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Double, double toil and trouble;
Fire burn, and cauldron bubble!
Another of our Mathematical Halloween themed activities is using ratio and proportion to make witches brew.
Download the recipe sheet I used with a low ability year 7 group here; Witches brew Recipe Sheet.
I renamed some basic ingredients to make them more disgusting sounding! Stagnant pond water = lemonade, pumpkin puree = orange juice, pink poison = cranberry juice, dash of blood = grenadine.
Any non-alcoholic recipe can easily be used as a witches brew, make it more ghastly by adding jelly snakes, eyes or other gruesome sweets available at this time of year! Check out this post by Emma Salk for non-alcoholic cocktail recipes.
Download this creepy cocktails starter activity of quick fire questions; Creepy cocktails ideal for low ability year 7 pupils, which recaps finding halves, doubles and thirds of amounts. Following which pupils then make the cocktail, using the recipe sheet (above) to find the measurements for one drink and then use Price List Witches brew to work out batch costs.
These resources were designed for low ability pupils, they can easily be differentiated by requiring students to work with more complex ratios, or requiring more precise measurement.
Numeracy Across the Curricular Links
Many links with the food technology department, adapting recipes and using the measuring jugs!
Why not dress up and make an event of it by also making the pop-up 3D spiders (our next blog post soon to come)!
This idea can easily be adapted for Hawaiian themed beach party if you study ratio and proportion in the summer time. Check out the crazy cocktail resources, also available for free download from Number Loving’s resource shop.
We hope you like our ideas and would love to hear how they went in your school!
Halloween is such a fun time of year and it’s great to try and bring some of that excitement into your classroom, I’ve never found a really good Halloween themed resource so at Number-Loving we set about trying to make some!
To kick things off we have a Mathematical Whodunit, this is born out of my love (and unbeaten record) of the board game Cluedo.
The setting is the hotel ‘Spooksville’, the victim is the elusive ‘Mr Black’ and there are six suspects.
The idea is that students work in groups of 5-7, each assuming the identity of one of the characters. They each get a character card which gives them answers to three questions. On their turn they can ask a fellow player one of these question. There’s also a pool of general evidence for students to look at to help them in determining who the murderer is.
The task is quite complex so depending on the class you may need to structure it for them – e.g. tell them for the first 10 minutes they have to find out about the crime itself, then for the next ten they have to find out who had a motive, then who had the means and finally who had opportunity. But if your class are quite used to mysteries and open tasks then you can probably just leave them to it! The Maths is mostly functional and includes:
- Interpreting time in 12 hour and 24 hour
- Maps and scales
- Speed, distance and time
- Reading timetables and mileage charts
- Reading bank statements
- Applying logic and working methodically
In the resource I have summarised a few alternative ways to play – one idea being to get members of the department dressed up as the characters and play the game at an open evening or collapsed timetable day.
I haven’t used this with a class yet – I’m going to save it for my last lesson before Halloween, if anyone does use it I’d love to hear how it goes. You can tweet us @numberloving.
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