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Activity 3: Strengthening subject knowledge

Created on 29 April 2014 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 10 June 2014 by ncetm_administrator

Activity 3: Strengthening subject knowledge

Exploring the requirements of the 2014 curriculum may well result in some surprise – or even concern - amongst colleagues. Some aspects which have been seen for some time as within the realm of secondary mathematics will now first be encountered in upper Key Stage 2. Others, particularly within probability and statistics, will now be introduced in Key Stage 3. For example, 'multiply simple pairs of proper fractions, writing the answer in its simplest form' appears in the statutory requirements for Year 6. In Key Stage 3, 'use trigonometric ratios in similar triangles' is included in the programme of study. This activity is an opportunity to introduce and explain support provided by the NCETM to strengthen subject knowledge, and therefore access to the internet will be required. It is likely that teachers will want to study this aspect in more depth beyond the PDM. The NCETM Microsite ‘Video material to support the implementation of the National Curriculum’ explores how children might access the more challenging concepts through the use of representations.

Introduce your team to the National Curriculum Resource Tool. This resource is designed to help teachers plan lessons in line with the new curriculum.

Select Y6 Fractions (including decimals and percentages) and click ‘show selection’. Explain that the page is now displaying all statements in the National Curriculum at that level of expectation. The coloured buttons provide information as follows:

  • Subject Knowledge: Links to appropriate areas of the NCETM self-evaluation tool.
  • Making Connections: The relevant areas of mathematics in adjacent year groups are displayed, along with cross-curricular and real-life connections.
  • Articles: Relevant reading from the NCETM and other sources.
  • Activities: A wide variety of ideas for the classroom that can be used when teaching the concept.
  • Exemplification: Questions designed to exemplify the learning outcomes in that area of mathematics at this level of expectation.
  • Video: Relevant videos from the NCETM and other sources.

Depending on the number in your team, assign a button to each individual or pair.

As individuals or in pairs:
Ask members of your team to spend ten minutes exploring the content within Y6 Fractions, with a particular focus on 'multiply simple pairs of proper fractions, writing the answer in its simplest form'.

As a team:
Ask each pair to explain and demonstrate their findings.

Discussion point

The existing National Curriculum levels are disappearing. Schools are free to adopt their own assessment approaches. See 'assessing without levels' on the DfE website.

  • How do members of your team feel about the removal of level descriptors from the curriculum?
  • How will summative assessment operate in your new school curriculum?
  • Can the exemplifications explored above help with assessment in your school?

Take it further:

  • NCETM self-evaluation tool: Use the browse functionality of the tool to instantly access the next steps for any chosen area of mathematics. Find out further exemplifications, ideas for the classroom and links to other areas both inside and outside of mathematics.
  • NCETM National Curriculum resource tool: This activity only explores one area of the curriculum and in one year group. Members of your team may want to explore other aspects of mathematics, particularly any identified while exploring the structure of the 2014 curriculum earlier in the meeting.

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