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NCETM Newsletter - October 2018


Created on 12 October 2018 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 19 October 2018 by ncetm_administrator

With plenty of teaching time between now and next summer’s GCSE exams, there’s still every opportunity to benefit from lessons learnt from how students performed this year. In our latest podcast we find out from the exam boards where students shone and where they struggled.

Also this month:

Questions causing students most trouble in GCSE maths exams: evidence from exam boards in our latest podcast

In a new NCETM podcast, the three main exam boards in England give their verdict on how students performed in last summer’s GCSE maths papers, the second year that Year 11 students sat the new, harder exam.

All three awarding bodies, AQA, Edexcel and OCR, found evidence that, overall, students had been better prepared than in the previous year.

But all three also identified reasoning and problem-solving as areas where large numbers of Year 11s still lack confidence.

Teachers also gave their views on how their students did in our regular Tuesday evening #mathscpdchat Twitter discussion on 18 September.

Professional development opportunities from the Maths Hubs Programme

It’s not too late to think about professional development for you, your colleagues, or your department this year! The Maths Hubs website has an overview of national CPD projects, and your local Maths Hub will be able to tell you what’s available locally. Do, however, register NOW, as most start this term.

NCETM mastery professional development materials: milestone reached!

We've now completed all sections of the number, addition and subtraction area of our popular mastery professional development materials for primary school teachers. What’s more, each year group now has its own downloadable zip file.

Class-grouping and mastery in secondary schools

With work in the field of teaching for mastery undergoing significant expansion in the secondary sector, it’s a good time to clarify that the NCETM and Maths Hubs are wholly neutral on how schools group their classes for maths lessons. Read our stance in full here.

NCETM Magazines

In this half-term’s Primary Magazine we look at ‘subitising’, a skill that is presently getting a lot of attention in Early Years, but relevant to teachers of all ages. And we also give a taste of how some schools used social media to share their delight at SATs results at the end of last term, which they attributed to a teaching for mastery approach to mathematics.

Meanwhile, in the latest Secondary Magazine we meet the GCSE exam boards to discuss last summer’s questions (see also our latest podcast, above), and we catch up with our Secondary Mastery Specialist contributor.

A single professional maths subject association?

We've previously mentioned the merger proposal being discussed by the five maths subject associations (AMET, ATM, MA, NAMA and NANAMIC). Now, moves have advanced, with the sharing of a draft proposal detailing what a new, single association might do, and how it might be constituted, together with a summary of the background to the proposal.

In brief

  • Do you give mathematical talks in schools and colleges? The London Mathematical Society currently has vacancies for people to lead sessions for groups of students or teachers in its Holgate Lectures and Workshops scheme.
  • There’s still time to catch up with the first episode of Hannah Fry’s new three-part series for BBC4, Magic Numbers: Hannah Fry’s Mysterious World of Maths. Over the course of the series, Hannah is exploring the mystery of maths, asking if it is invented like a language, or if it is discovered, and part of the fabric of the universe.
  • On Saturday 10 November, the British Society for Research into Learning Mathematics (BSRLM) is holding a day conference in London. BSRLM holds three such conferences each year, where mathematics educators present their ongoing work to each other, with around 30 half-hour or one-hour sessions to choose from, across a range of ages and topics. The BSRLM website has more information.
  • Tickets are now available for The Big Bang Fair 2019, a celebration of STEM subjects for young people in the UK – find out more on their website.

Please do contact us if you have any comments on this newsletter.


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