The importance of maths
Mathematics equips children with a uniquely powerful set of tools to understand and change the world. These tools include logical reasoning, problem-solving skills, and the ability to think in abstract ways. As such, mathematics is a creative discipline. It can stimulate moments of happiness and wonder when a child solves a problem for the first time, discovers a more efficient solution to a problem or suddenly sees hidden connections.
Throughout history, mathematics has shaped the way we view the world. The early study of astronomy demanded the expansion of our understanding of mathematics and made possible such realizations as the size and weight of the earth, our distance from the sun, the fact that we revolve around it, and other discoveries that allowed us to move forward in our body of knowledge without which we would not have any of our modern marvels of technology.
Mathematics remains as important today. Many life stages and skills require a solid grasp of mathematics, from entering university to balancing a household budget, applying for a home loan, or assessing a possible business opportunity. When children eventually leave education and seek out a career, they will inevitably need to call upon the mathematical skills and strategies they have learnt at school. They will soon realise that many careers require a solid understanding of maths. Doctors, lawyers, accountants and other professionals use maths on a daily basis, as do builders, plumbers, engineers and managers. Maths is a critical skill for many professions and opens a world of opportunity for children.
A survey in 2012 reported that Britain's adult numeracy skills are among the lowest in the world, claiming that 50% of adults were no better at basic maths than the average Primary School child. We would hope very much that we are playing an important part in changing that statistic.
Test your maths skills
It would be interesting to see how many Henleaze children and parents can answer the 4 sample questions on the Radio 4 website.
Resources and web based links
The internet is a rich resource of games, puzzles and activities to support and consolidate learning at home. This is especially true with Mathematics!
At school, we strive to incorporate within the teaching and learning of maths a variety of ICT based interactive resources that help to bring maths alive! Many of these applications also serve to place the learning in a meaningful context that the children can relate to. As such, they are an invaluable resource that can be dipped into at home for free!
With this in mind, we have listed below a handful of the more effective educational sites on offer. To try out these resources, simply click on the hyperlinked titles below.
A fantastic site! A wealth of games and activities organised by curriculum area, i.e. shape and space.
Another great site from a primary school in Kent! Lots of games organised in a very child friendly way.
Brilliant site! Lots of games and an excellent revision unit – KS2 Bitesize Maths.
An innovative site that includes the classic game – 'Who wants to be a Mathonaire?' with Chris Tangent!
A U.S educational site with some great games. Try out ‘Pumpkin Multiples'!!