The focus of my thoughts in school this week has been numeracy. With assessments, a course and a chance to observe another teacher in this area all taking place.
In terms of assessments it was interesting to find the success in mathematics that can be had by some learners with poor reading skills when questions are read out for them. Potentially this should be the way all learners are assessed in maths as ability to read does not effect practical maths skills. It was also disappointing to find some learners greatly underachieving in tests when their work in class is much better it is imperative to find out what it is about tests that is stopping these learners showing their true potential.
The course i took part in was hosted by GWE and focused on numerical reasoning. The three key things i took away were,
1) RUCSAC approach to problem solving (read, underline, choose, solve, answer, check)
2) Identifying 10 different problem solving strategies (see below)
3) Using numeracy as the starting point for cross curricular and thematic planning.
Today i was lucky enough to work with @davidleighevans some fantastic work on STEM and numeracy that will stick with me and the learners for some time to come!
So to summarise what I have learnt this week is that to be effective in teaching numeracy it needs to be fun, it needs to be used throughout the curriculum and learners need to learn how to develop their own problem solving strategies.
Star of the week - The fantastic work completed by learners using gears and cogs to develop STEM.
Wish for the week - Need to assess learners practical maths skills as well as their skills on paper to really assess where they are.
The Week Ahead
Another busy week looms however that is the best way to be. It will be important to start developing the learners ability to act for the school Christmas play, Welsh PowerPoints need to be created and i need to find more effective strategies for addressing gaps in learners maths firstly by finding out what they can and can't do.