Focus on...Number Day
It’s nearly upon us (although you still have time to plan for it!) – the day that could prove to be the most exciting day you and your pupils have had at school this year…Number Day, 4 December 2009!
This year, all funds raised from Number Day activities go towards supporting the work of the National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC). The NSPCC was founded in 1884 and now has 180 community-based projects, as well as running the NSPCC Helpline and ChildLine in the UK and the Channel Islands. Most of its work is with children, young people and their families, but it also works to achieve cultural, social and political change.
To achieve the aim, that all children are loved, valued and able to fulfil their potential, the NSPCC has four main objectives:
- to mobilise everyone to take action to end child cruelty
- to give children the help, support and environment they need to stay safe from cruelty
- to find ways of working with communities to keep children safe from cruelty
- to be, and be seen as, someone to turn to for children and young people.
So, what is Number Day? Well, it’s an excuse to really raise the profile of mathematics in your school and the local community, with everyone spending the whole day immersed in exciting maths activities, while raising money for a good cause.
To get you started with the planning of your number day, the NSPCC has developed a website full of exciting mathematics activity ideas, assembly plans and posters to promote your fundraising events – covering Key Stages 1 to 4. You can register your interest on the Number Day website, and you will receive a web address enabling you to access all of the materials.
Why not use Number Day (or the whole week) to explore some of the ‘mathematical stories’ focused on in Issue 3 of the Primary Magazine? You will find a comprehensive list of mathematical story books plus activities and lesson ideas to use with all the children to Year 6. Issue 12 of the Magazine has a ‘Maths to Share’ feature focusing on the use of games in mathematics lessons. There are masses of exciting games available online, many of which reflect popular television shows that the children will love. Number Day on 4 December could be just one big game!
Whether it's finding higher or lower, playing connect four or mathematical hangman, everyone is sure to have fun. Try these or some of the other online games below.
One primary school in Solihull, West Midlands, decided to aim high during the last Number Day, by allowing all of their pupils to release, en masse, hundreds of red helium balloons into the sky. Attached to each was a mathematical puzzle or question written by the pupils, with instructions for those finding the balloon to complete the puzzle and return to school. The landing positions of any balloon tags returned were plotted on a map, and prizes awarded for the longest balloon flight. A wonderful idea, and one that could round off your Number Day celebrations with great excitement.
- Maths is Fun is a wonderful site with links to electronic versions of many games and puzzles that the children will recognise. They include Reversi, Tower of Hanoi, Broken Calculator and Multiplication Games, amongst many others
- HoodaMath has three clear categories of games; geometry, arithmetic and logic. Hundreds of possibilities cover all key stages.
The Comber Primary School’s CountIT project has developed a whole range of online games and activities. There are interactive online games for the Early Years Foundation Stage, Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2.