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Building a Picture of Professional Development - Jean, Maths Teacher in Sheffield

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 29 June 2009 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 13 October 2010 by ncetm_administrator

Building a Picture of Professional Development

Jean Howard, Maths Teacher in Sheffield

I like to introduce an element of challenge into the work whenever possible. This probably originates from my training at Collegiate Crescent during the 1980s where part of the course involved the deriving of games under the direction of Dave Kirby   

The challenges can take several forms:

  • competitions with pupils in pairs or groups which can lead to lots of discussion as pupils explain (or argue!) their method of getting to the answer. A good paired competition is the ‘4 in a Row’ activity which can be used across a wide variety of topics (directed numbers, algebra, multiplication)
  • A ‘Treasure Trail’ of cards with puzzles and problems arranged around the classroom is a good group activity which encourages collaboration.
  • I find individual challenges can be good sources of motivation: who can complete most work / get most correct in a given timescale; who can give a clear explanation to a problem;   if the challenges are varied most of the pupils can experience success.
I try to challenge pupils to think more deeply about the work so, for instance, I might round off a lesson on area and perimeter by asking “who can find a rectangle where the perimeter is the same as the area……..twice the area ……..”

….and we all like to hear those five little words…….Ahhh I get it now 
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