From the editor
Welcome to another issue of the NCETM Secondary Magazine. You may have come across articles from the Philosophy of Mathematics Education Journal, founded and edited by Professor Paul Ernest of Exeter University – Paul has given us an interesting Interview for this issue.
If you are talking in your department about fresh approaches to consider for the next school year, have a look at It makes me think – it’s a sketch of how some teachers in Somerset are trying out new ideas, and sharing and reflecting on their experiences, during a professional development project.
As in the previous issue, some ideas for the classroom can be found in the Focus on, which this time looks at structures of labyrinths. It suggests some starting points of the kind that sometimes appear when students want to ‘get to the bottom’ of procedures that they are shown – when they ask themselves why the methods work.
Students are unlikely to have come across ‘algorithms’ for creating labyrinths, there are many variations, and the results of following them are intriguing. For these reasons ‘recipes’ for creating labyrinths are good examples of ‘shown methods’ that, rather than just being accepted and followed, students are likely to enjoy exploring. Students can look for similarities and differences between their own different examples of procedures that they try out, and between the patterns that they create. The differences and similarities can suggest conjectures to test – and while students are doing these kinds of things, they will be feeling what it is like to act as mathematicians.