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Mathematics Matters Lesson Accounts 1 - Awareness of the Nature and Values of the Educational System

This page has been archived. The content was correct at the time of original publication, but is no longer updated.
Created on 27 May 2008 by ncetm_administrator
Updated on 25 June 2008 by ncetm_administrator

Mathematics Matters Lesson Accounts
A collection of memorable mathematics lessons that conference and colloquia delegates had observed or taught which they felt were successful.  Each account refers to one or more of the values and principles in the report.

Lesson Account 1 - Awareness of the Nature and Values of the Educational System

Written by Afzal Ahmed
Organisation University of Chichester
Age/Ability Range Unknown

(a) What was the mathematical task(s)?
A set of given problems that include more information than needed in order to solve them. Pupils are asked to cross out the information not needed and to then solve the problems.

In the associated task pupils are given incomplete problems and asked what else they need in order to solve them; pupils propose the additional information and then solve the problems.

(b) What learning culture was created? How was this achieved?
The unusual nature of these problems generates interest and discussion. The nature of the problem prompts a more considered response to its solution.

(c) How could you tell that the task(s) achieved the intended purposes? Do you have any evidence?
After working on these problems, questions presented in the form associated with end of Key Stage 3 tests became more straightforward and were more confidently tackled.

(d) Is this example available to see/read about?
Numeracy Activities Key Stage 3 Mathematics – Resource File Series: pages 10-14 Ahmed & Williams Network Educational Press Ltd.

(e) Can you say why you chose this example? What criteria were in your mind?
On the face of it these problems appear to be about developing fluency and preparing to take end-of-key-stage tests. (and in part they are) However they bring an element of surprise to pupils in their deficit or superfluity of information. The surprise acts as a motivator. Pupils develop skills in setting their own problems and become discerning respondents to questions set in end-of-key-stage tests.


Values & Principles

Awareness of the nature and values of educational system
Encourages reasoning rather than ‘answer getting’

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Lesson Accounts Introduction

Mathematics Matters - What constitutes the effective learning of mathematics? find out more


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21 June 2008 22:11
These lesson accounts are very useful, but it takes time to browse through them. Although you can search by values and principles, it would also be extremely useful to be able to search by Key Stage or even Year group.
By cherri
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