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Stories of change - moving from '3' to '2'

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 23 November 2009 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 07 April 2010 by ncetm_administrator

During my first year at the school as subject leader, informal conversations (with colleagues) and anecdotal evidence confirmed the view that the majority of my fellow practitioners did not share my enthusiasm and passion for teaching mathematics. What’s more, the school timetable of staff meetings, twilight sessions and Inset did not reflect the importance of the subject, nor provide opportunities to reflect on the quality of provision in order to shape future teaching and learning.

At the start of my second year at the school, I met with the SLT and requested a higher profile for mathematics within, and across, the academic year. The specific features discussed, and agreed, included:

  • a termly (ie. 6-weekly) whole staff, or age-phase, meeting dedicated to strengthening subject expertise and/or reviewing elements of the mathematics improvement plan
  • raising the profile of pupils’ mathematical achievements in the weekly ‘Celebrations’ assembly
  • opportunities for colleagues to disseminate key messages and personal action points from centre-based CPD events (within weekly staff meetings)
  • a half/full-day Inset commitment to mathematics each year

Pupils’ enjoyment of mathematics was variable and I decided to use one of the newly-timetabled staff meetings to discuss possible ways forward. We shared ideas for broadening and enriching pupils’ mathematical experiences. As a starting point, we planned opportunities for learning beyond the classroom.       
This included:

  • off-site visits (e.g. a woodland walk, visit to a place of worship);
  • community links (e.g. local supermarket, post office, library, bakery, newsagents, café);
  • cross-curricular links (eg. science - investigating the number of different kinds of minibeasts in the school garden and deciding how to represent this; PE - recording standing long jump measurements on a 0-100 metre stick; Art - reconstructing works of artists who used angle, such as Kandinsky).


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