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Lunchtime Maths!

Yesterday two colleagues and I attended a training course at another school quite a distance away. The course itself wasn’t particularly good or useful, but it did leave us with a few ideas to ponder and try as well as a few recommendations of books to read on educational research.

One of the ideas that we left with came from a throw away comment by one of the people leading the course. He said: “children want to do things. Leave some work out on the corridor and they will pick it up and do it. Try it.”

So we did. We were all free before lunch so we selected a number of maths puzzles we would normally use as lesson starters, placed them on all the tables in the canteen, took up a spot on the balcony and watched. The results were quote astonishing.

Firstly the year 8’s arrived. Many of them picked them up and started working on them, big groups congregated and started discussing them, coming up with strategies to work them out. A couple pit some in their bags for later. The groups weren’t just the ones you would expect either!

The next groups to arrive were years 9 and 10, they also were intrigued and started looking at them, less of these year groups actually took out pens to have a crack, but some did and plenty still had conversations about them. One group of boys from my year ten class, who can be quite challenging, had a long chat about one and asked me later about it.

The last year group to arrive were year 11, most of them headed straight outside to enjoy the sunshine but the ones who stayed did look at them and attempt them.

We were delighted by the way the experiment went. Hundreds of pupils were either doing, or talking about maths! What a result! We intend to try this again from time to time next year.

  1. July 30, 2013 at 2:22 am

    I love this idea Cav and will be experimenting with this this year! 🙂

    Thanks for the inspiration

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