Whilst not wanting to define this article as mathematical gossip, it does come close! We’ve brought together news and current mathematical affairs, all in one place. We do hope it will interest you.
If you’re in any way involved in, or interested in, the new Core Maths qualifications, you might want to attend one of two open events being run in connection with the Core Maths Support Programme. There’s one event in London on 2 March, and one in York on 4 March, and both events are free.
There’s less of the wonderful More or Less on BBC Radio 4 at the moment, but you can download podcasts of editions from the World Service on the programme’s homepage. You can also follow the presenter on Twitter, @TimHarford: lots of great ideas to take into lessons, especially but not only about the misunderstanding and misuse of data.
In January, Ofqual (Twitter @ofqual) published details of a number of measures they are taking to review the level of demand of the sample GSCE assessment materials published by exam boards in preparation for the introduction of the new GCSE (first teaching September 2015, first exams Summer 2017). The three strands to the research programme, and the proposed timeline, are set out here. We will keep you updated, of course.
The Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA) is offering Mathematics Teacher Training Scholarships of £25 000. The IMA says that “a Maths teacher training scholarship will recognise your potential to be an inspirational teacher and future leader in maths education. It not only brings with it a tax free grant of £25 000 (replacing any teacher training bursary entitlement) but membership of a community where you can share your highs and lows, experiences and queries”. Do share this with aspiring mathematics teachers that you know: it’s never been a better time to train to teach Maths.
You may have noticed the recent news item, Lift me higher: Building the world's tallest lift. The graphic representation of the heights of these buildings reminded us of the resource Fox scales Shard.
Three new publications have caught our eyes this month:
Thinking about spring cleaning? Start with the attic - at Bletchley Park, they’ve just found some of Turing’s code-breaking research being used to keep the draughts (as well as the Germans!) at bay. Maybe Fermat’s own proof of his last theorem is currently patching up your loft insulation?!
Looking ahead, by the time you’re reading issue 120, we will have celebrated the numerological maths-gasm that is Pi Day, Stephen Hawking is basking in Oscar glory (as might have Alan Turing), and the new film X + Y (about an ASD mathematician finding love at the Taiwanese IMO – no, honestly!) will be in the multiplex. Right now, my “Maths” and “Zeitgeist” Venn diagram is pretty much two concentric congruent circles! What will you, your students or your school/college be doing to join in?
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