On 27 June, The Guardian highlighted some activities that they placed on their Guardian Teacher Network on the subject of How to teach...debt. Did you know that 45 years ago, on 28 June, the credit card was launched? Personal debt is rising, we are in a financial crisis, as are several European countries and the USA. It might be a good idea to plan a few activities to enable the children to become aware of debt and engage in money management. The article in The Guardian has links to some useful resources developed by the Personal Finance Education Group (PFEG), which you might find useful.
St Edmund’s Catholic Primary School in Richmond undertook an NCETM Regional Project, Mathematics through purposeful contexts, which involved money management. The objectives of the project were to:
- create cross-curricular projects where mathematics is learnt through purposeful contexts
- consolidate key numeracy skills; handling data, budgeting, percentages
- address ECM: economic well being; enjoy and achieve; positive contribution
- teach real-life money management
- provide a context for writing for a purpose: advertising, speeches, persuasive writing
- broaden opportunities for speaking and listening to an audience
- raise the profile of citizenship: job roles, leadership, running a small business
- improve the confidence of staff: enable them to plan and deliver creative schemes of work
- increase children’s enjoyment in the subject and to help them understand and embed new mathematical skills more effectively and so improve children’s confidence and achievement.
Their project is ongoing but you might find it interesting to read about what they have done so far.
Have you ever held a ‘Money Week’? If so, we’d love to hear about it and maybe share your work in a future edition of the Primary Magazine. If not, but you are thinking about it, the resources suggested here might be of help to you in your planning.
As promised in Issue 36, the Mathematics Specialist Teacher (MaST) microsite is now live. It is in two sections, the first is called ‘getting started’ and provides useful information for teachers interested in becoming a mathematics specialist teacher. The information about the programme comes under these five headings:
- School leadership teams
- Teachers and subject leaders
- Funding for MaST
- Further support information.
The second section is a new addition and is called ‘the MaST programme and beyond’. It is aimed at giving support to those teachers who have completed the programme in their work in schools. It helps to answer these questions:
There is also a MaST online forum for you to get involved with so that you can support each other.
- Developing and supporting the MaST role: how can you ensure maximum impact in your school?
- Models for working with colleagues: which is most appropriate in your school… coaching, mentoring, the lesson study approach?
- Working with Early Years Foundation Stage practitioners: are you confident in supporting staff in Nursery and Reception classes?
- Supporting others in the school community: how can you work most effectively with support staff, parents and governors?
- Research and resources: what resources are already available to support you in being as effective in your role as possible? What has already been tried and tested?
The Research and Resources section is particularly useful to all teachers, especially subject leaders, as it brings together all the ‘Maths to Share’ articles and the articles involving linking mathematics with history and art from all the Primary Magazines. The section about supporting in Nursery and Reception classes has a series of videos of young children working. A favourite is Judging the Show Jumping, which shows just how much young children are capable of in mathematics! This is well worth sharing with your colleagues.
With the National Strategies gone, where are you going for your advice and support? If you are looking in-house, then where are subject leaders getting their ideas and support? The mathematics subject associations can provide you with tools and inspirations to lead mathematics in your school. Have you ever thought of becoming a member of one? If not, why not have a browse at those available to see what they offer?
You might find it helpful to keep teachfind in mind if you are looking for the archived National Strategy materials. Even when the official National Archive says that something you might want is not available, you can get it on this site. It has proved very useful to everyone who knows about it.