I missed writing my blog post last week due to other commitments but am back for week 10. It has been a funny week at work. Lots of uncertainty over Coronavirus and other work related issues. However, I have enjoyed teaching my classes this week after a low spell.

So here’s what my classes were doing last week:

S2 – we completed our block on proportion by completing a task involving deciding whether a problem is direct or inverse then solving. This was the task the pupils worked on:

a copy can be found here. What I really enjoyed was going around the room and listening to pupils discussing each problem. Then we started working on similar shapes. This involved drawing enlargements and reductions and calculating missing sides using scale factors. The main resource used was a from Corbett Maths before moving onto similar triangles. We started exploring similar triangles using this task from www.mapmathshell.org – this was a great start to our work on similar triangles.

S3 – we continued working on preparation for the numeracy assessment, which the class took on Thursday. Then we started reviewing arithmetic with negative numbers. This is an area which most of the class had struggled so I decided to use double sided counters to try to promote a better understanding. We only looked at addition on Friday so will continue next week. Most of the class continued to use the counters when working on individual practice and were very successful. As a follow on to the practice questions I gave the class this pyramid sheet from www.goteachmaths.co.uk.

N5 – after working on sine rule and cosine rule last week, we looked at questions involving bearings. I was aware of a lack of time to finish the course so never spent as long reviewing bearings before starting the questions which meant some pupils made basic mistakes with labelling angles. Lesson learnt – give enough time to review prior knowledge properly. Then we moved onto statistics – quartiles and semi interquartile range and standard deviation. I feel my N5 class have been short changed again with this topic as it was rushed. I was worried that the school might get closed before I finished the course so was in a hurry to finish everything off.

Higher – final topic of the higher course, recurrence relations. After looking at what a recurrence relation is and how it works we moved onto finding the limit of recurrence relations. I asked the class to work out the first 10 terms of the following: then discussed the results.

The class conjectured that for -1 < a < 1 the sequence tended towards a fixed number.

As well as recurrence relations, I set a revision task involving multiple choice questions.

While all of the pupils found the correct answer for each problem they did struggle to decide on what mistake could lead to wrong answers. A nice discussion task though.

S1 Numeracy – for a starter I set a question from www.mathsvenns.com.

The class loved it. Once they had decided on their own answers they compared with a partner and I could hear lots of discussions about why numbers did or didn’t belong. Fab task.