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Primary Magazine - Issue 6

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 17 December 2008 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 23 April 2009 by ncetm_administrator

Primary Magazine Issue 6

Happy New Year and welcome to the sixth issue of the Primary Magazine.
In this issue we explore the mathematical possibilities surrounding World Religion Day, interview Mike Askew, look at the Ancient Mayan number system and plan a mathematics week.
Our Up2d8 Maths focuses on pirates and includes November’s news of the hijacking of the Saudi oil tanker, Sirius Star. The fact that the pantomime season is in full flow makes a wonderful lead into pirates, a much loved topic for primary school children! This presentation opens up many opportunities for exploring numbers, data handling coordinates and measures in the classroom, practically and through word problem-solving.


From the editor
In 2008, according to the data, the proportion of children scoring the ‘top mark’ in their SATs fell significantly. We look at the possible reasons behind this.
Up2d8 maths
This issue of Up2d8 is based around pirates. The mathematics is introduced through pantomime and the fictional pirate Captain Hook. It then moves on to Blackbeard and Anne Bonny and why mathematics was very important to the pirates of long ago. The third spread presents a great opportunity for exploring coordinates on a treasure map. The final spread focuses on the problem of present-day piracy in our seas. All provide great opportunities for some exciting mathematics work involving data handling, number, measures and co-ordinates for all ages.
The interview
Our interview is with Mike Askew, professor of mathematics education at King’s College London, where he researches the teaching and learning of mathematics in primary schools. He is also a director of BEAM Education, which stands for Be A Mathematician, producing materials and providing training for primary mathematics. 
Focus on...World Religion Day
This focus provides a wealth of opportunities to devise mathematical activities based around World Religion Day, with interesting facts and websites to explore with your class. The ideas can be adapted and modified for all years from the Foundation Stage to Year 6 and encourage cross-curricular links between mathematics and RE.
Starter of the month
Our starter suggestions are based around World Religion Day. The ideas are centred on 2D and 3D shape and their properties including that of symmetry and also repeating patterns. These are suitable for children in FS, KS1 and KS2.
A little bit of history
In this issue we go back in time to the Ancient Mayan number system. This system dates back to the fourth century and was approximately 1 000 years more advanced than the European system of that time. They used a base 20 number system which, it is believed, was because the Mayans lived in a warm climate and rarely needed to wear shoes and therefore 20 was the total number of fingers and toes they could count with!
Something to share - planning a mathematics week
The focus in this issue is planning a mathematics week. The article suggests how to share with staff the ‘Who?’, ‘What?’, ‘Where?’, ‘Why?’, ‘When?’ and ‘How?’ of planning such a week and gives ideas of how to organise a successful event. There are weblinks and suggestions for themes for a possible mathematics week.
 Click here to view this issue in PDF format
 Visit the Primary Magazine Archive
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