What’s next for maths now the SATS/GCSEs are over?

SATS are over for 2017. Facebook groups evidently (thanks @_MissieBee on twitter for that) laugh about doing lots of colouring, “basically anything *but* maths" and even a suggestion that year 6 should finish now like year 11! Well, I am not sure that’s the best example to use given the lamentations that come from sixth form teachers, as the first months are spent going over GCSE work rather than actually doing A level study.

So secondary schools and sixth form teachers worry about exactly what maths will be remembered come September.

Of course, many teachers in year 6 will be doing lots of great activities now the pressures of high stakes SATS are over.

Such as the activities from NRICH — do take a look if you have not seen these.

But there is still the thorny question of how to avoid the drop in achievement over the summer break. The well known ‘transition’ problems.

I believe that regular practice is key, and have sometimes likened this to learning Ballet. Regular ‘class’ ensures the ballet basics don’t get forgotten and move into long term memory.

So to aid year 6 and year 11 as they move towards the next stage of learning maths, Mathspace is making its services FREE OF CHARGE for any year 6 or year 11 class (and the Scottish equivalent classes)until the end of September 2017.

This means that quick revision tasks can be set up that ensure key aspects don’t get forgotten. Students can do more work if they wish — every step being marked for you and fed back to the student for them to act upon.

Prospective A level students can be given work, or choose their own and you can keep an eye on it as well. Every step they do.

And in September, pupils can take their work records to their new class and show their teacher exactly what they can do. Beware year 7 teachers, some will have done far more than you may expect!

So, if you are a year 6 teacher wanting to ensure all the hard work you and they have put in, is not wasted.

Or a year 7 teacher working with your feeder schools.

Or a sixth form teacher fed up of having to go over inequalities or solving equations again… then get in touch now. Just email info at mathspace.co.uk and we shall do the rest.

Finally, Mathspace is about learning, not performance. We are not so concerned with what percentage a student gets, or how many questions they did in what time (although that information is available). What we want to enable is for you to see how students learn and what they do when they are unsure. Which is why we mark and provide feedback every step. This sometimes means it is more difficult to use Mathspace than something that just asks for answers or multiple choice. But for good reason. Long term learning is much more preferable to short term performance.

So if looking for a ‘quick fix’ then you have come to the wrong place. Instead, consider this. The Hong Kong Government has just made Mathspace freely available to any school in the territory. It is the ONLY online maths service they have deemed acceptable for their move to increase the use of technology. And they do know a thing or two about maths, but they want to increase the learning, not just their already well known, and very high, performance.

Remember, contact info at mathspace.co.uk for more details.

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