# Numeracy Grids

I previously blogged about my discovery and creation of Challenge Grids. I experimented using them with a few classes but didn’t feel I was using them as effectively as I could.

Moving to my new school a few weeks ago, I now teach mixed ability junior classes. My initial query was how can I have a starter task that all in the class can do which supports the lower ability but also challenges the more able?

Numeracy grids – every Wednesday the class is given a Numeracy grid like this: Continue reading

# Mixed Ability Classes

I have always taught junior classes that have been set by ability. Even within these classes there has still been a need for differentiation. In my new school the S1 and S2 classes are not set. This means I will need to rethink the way I teach these junior classes. I am going to have to spend time learning how best to teach mixed ability classes.

One thing did pop into my mind immediately: Challenge Grids.

# Integers Misconceptions

Why is it that so few of my pupils have a real understanding of performing calculations with negative numbers.

I have recently been working on finding the equation of a line in slope-intercept form with my S3 class. They investigated how to calculate gradient and have a great understanding of how to calculate gradient. The problems arose when actually calculating the gradient. So many errors with calculations such as -4 – (-5).

Listening to conversations at various tables I hear statements like “two negatives make a positive” and “I hate negative numbers”. The main misconceptions seem to be that since 6 – (-3) = 9 then -3 + (-4) = 7 since two negatives make a positive. Continue reading

# Nriching Integers

Negative numbers is not one of my favourite topics to teach. Pupils often struggle to understand the differences between adding and subtracting integers and get fixated on rules such as “two negatives make a positive” and it can be a struggle to get pupils engaged.

One way I try and put some excitement into the topic is using a couple of activities from http://nrich.maths.org.

Here are two of my favourites: