At Earl Mortimer College KS3 covers Years 7 and 8. Our goal for these pupils is that they talk about Maths. The more you talk about something, the more important it becomes and the more value it has. We want our pupils at Earl Mortimer to enjoy and take pride in their work. To encourage these we are putting in place a few strategies that will develop pupils’ understanding and value of maths.
1) Focus on the four: Most of maths is based on doing the four operations well (addition, subtraction, multiplication and division). If a pupil can do these consistently correctly then they have a much higher chance of succeeding overall. We encourage any pupil to have a go at these calculations, whether it’s 2 x 2 or 214.3 x 67.4 – every pupil can practice and improve in this area.
2) Investigation beats Repetition: we remember what we do better than what we copy. Many of the key concepts in maths will be taught in ways that facilitate discovery of maths, rather than expecting pupils to ‘cut and paste’ random calculations. The department is keen on sharing the best ways of doing this.
3) Depth over Breadth: there is no point in ‘new’ if you can’t already ‘do’. Before moving onto new content, it is vital that pupils have a genuine grasp of what they have already been taught. Our programming in maths is based upon getting the fundamentals firmed, forming a better foundation for higher-level thinking. ‘
One of our key tools in years 7 and 8 to practice the fundamentals is Numeracy Ninjas. This is a tried and tested resource that every pupil in KS3 does at least once a week. It develops fluency and thinking quickly. This then enables pupils to use their mental capacity for harder questions instead of having to calculate basic sums.
For more information on Numeracy Ninjas please visit this site.