boy stacking blocks

Making maths matter

Much attention is being given to encourage maths at younger and younger ages. As practitioners we can feel under pressure; are we giving our children enough opportunities for maths?


I recently came across this helpful article by Pradnya Patet. “Children may naturally demonstrate their intuitive knowledge about math in the process of play but mathematical proficiency does not just emerge on its own,” she writes. “Once the teacher has observed and assessed the exploration already happening, they should think about ways to make the children’s investigation more meaningful.”


Read the article for practical ideas of how to “add, subtract, multiply, and divide appropriate resources in a way that will encourage the children to problem-solve on their own”


The school where go-carts form the core of the curriculum

Dozens of go-carts were the last thing I expected to find when visiting Trimdon Grange Nursery and Infant School. From the outside the school looked quite ordinary, but stepping inside I was confronted with go-carts constructed from scraps of wood, cardboard and salvaged pram or scooter wheels. The go-cart race next week will be attended by most of the community at this ex-mining village near Durham.

The Head, Catherine Worton, explained how these go-carts formed the core of the curriculum last term for Year 1 and 2. Children experienced how properties of various materials serve particular needs (Science). They learned about wheel and axle mechanisms and electrical circuits (Design technology). The project included instructional and explanatory writing (English) plus measurement of distance and time (Maths). Learning dispositions deepened: motivation, perseverance, and the success of using real tools to achieve satisfying results.

Doesn't it make you want to go back to school?

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