Wednesday, 30 July 2014

National Mathematics Conference

I was lucky to be able to go to the 1st National Conference for School Leaders in Primary Mathematics Education in Melbourne last Friday.
We took a team and were able to hear motivating speakers and their take on leadership.

Matt Sexton was the Keynote speaker and he went into detail about why it is important to have good maths leadership in schools. We need to move from management to leadership and focus on planning, key ideas, transforming our culture, shift attitudes, use data, positive professional learning and mentor staff as needed. 

 Doug Clarke (one of my heroes in terms of maths) spoke and took a session. 
We were reminded of our moral purpose and the duality of education in making social links to curriculum. 

Ann Downton provided strategies to take back to school to help in developing an overall mathematics plan.  We delved into school context, planning, differentiation and collaboration. 

Sessions included the missing content and pedagogical knowledge. 

Colleen Monaghan lead us through teaching difficult concepts and how to support staff. 

A great professional learning opportunity. 

Sunday, 27 July 2014

Games by Pinterest

Here is our Sunday Night Game idea for this week.

This week I have indulged in my love of Pinterest. 

Enjoy the three links below to games/ideas. Click on the image to see the original pin.

Brilliant! Tally mark math games - frugal too! Thanks Allison McDonald @Allison @ No Time For Flash Cards

Lego math games/what a great visual for kids!!!

MENTAL MATH SKILLS; make a keynote and assign through showbie for partner work every day.

Wednesday, 23 July 2014

Maths Inquiry

Over the last few months, the 5/6 team have been experimenting with Maths Inquiry, linked to Interactive Note Books. 

This week we started an Economics Unit that focuses on budgets, conversion rates for different currencies and managing operations with money. 

So the task is open ended and is colour coded depending on ability and point of need, but allows all to focus and challenge themselves depending on skill and knowledge. 

As a team - we decide the focus and what skill is needed. 
We have developed a 'Running Course',  'Time' and "Statistics and Probability' unit that have been very successful. 
Our high flyers are working independently, those that need support are in focus teaching groups and have exposure to mini lessons. 

This unit is about having $5000 and going on a holiday (Fiona has led this unit) - searching for flights, accommodation, food, currency conversions and so much more. Our kids do not want to pack up - we did two hours of math today!

There are research skills involved and this is where our 1:1 netbook leasing program has been fantastic. 

 Some students are keeping track digitally, others are using their notebook and some notebooks are organised differently to what we are used to. 

 Our next focus is to be the Commonwealth Games.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Guess My Number - Sunday Night Game

For all our Australian readers - welcome back to school. 
I think we are all back now across our country and have all begun our third term. 
For our American readers - you still have some time left for summer break. 

So here is our Sunday Night Game idea for this week.

This is a very old but very good game called
"Guess My Number"
It is fabulous for assessing place value.
You can model this for your whole grade and once they understand how to play they can play in small groups, partners or whole grade without you being the moderator.
It can be differentiated by using numbers between 0-5 or 0-1000000 or as high as you like. 
You can use it for fractions, for decimals, percentages, measurement such as time, length or absolutely anything. 

Decide what will be your number and to begun with - write it on a sticky note to show you haven't changed your mind!
I find that when introducing this for the fist time if I use a 120 chart and flip the numbers over that are not relevant they pick up how to do this much quicker.

Children ask is the number bigger than 79? If the answer is no then flip the numbers you don't need. 
This way there is a visual as to numbers needed.
Is the number smaller than 21? No
Keep answering questions until the students have worked out the number.
They can even ask questions like - is it an odd number? does it have a 3 in the tens place?
Brainstorm and model questions to ask, so that when they do this in groups they are aware of what/how they can ask questions.

Once they master the between - smaller - larger language, move away from the 120 chart and use a number line.
This magnetic frames are excellent for narrowing down numbers
Then start recording numbers on the board without the prompts  - good luck and let us know how the start of your term goes. 
For our American readers enjoy the remainder of your summer break.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Welcome back to Term 3!

To our Victorian followers - we hope you have had a fantastic start to the term and have settled back into your school routines!
This term we will endeavour to post a broad range of topics. We will share resources we have created, along with a range of Maths tips & tricks.
Games are often a fantastic way to consolidate learning - students are easily engaged and are able to practice the skills you have taught.
Many games involve the use of dice - this can be noisy and these small objects can 'accidently' end up in all sorts of locations around your classroom!
Our tip today...
invest in a roll of woven rubber matting (often used in kitched drawers) and cut it into squares/rectangles etc approximately the size of an A4 sheet of paper.
When using dice - lay these mats on the table and all dice rolls must be done on these.
If the dice rolls off of the mat - they miss a turn.
You will be amazed at how much noise this cuts down! It also ensures the game is played in a defined space.
If you have anything to share or would like us to cover a specific area of Mathematics - please let us know at...