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Here Is How You Teach Maths!

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by JosephBloggs, Oct 10, 2007.

  1. A couple of things

    1. AFL - Assessment for learning is a 'method' of ensuring that pupils understand the work they are doing. It does not preclude a particular teaching style. Surely it is a good idea to know how well pupils are getting on?

    2. To the OP. I may have missed this but I would be curious to know how long you have been teaching, how many schools you have been at and most important of all how are you measuring the 'success' of your teaching.
    You clearly state that you are much better than most of us but what are your criteria? average value added, number of A*'s what?
  2. Damn damn damn

    have entered a debate with a 25 yr old know nothing..........

    forget my questions little fella i actually don't give a rats ass about any of your opinions or so called successes and am a bit cross at myself for getting in on this forum.

  3. "Damn damn damn

    have entered a debate with a 25 yr old know nothing......"

    Don't worry about it, it took me a while to click too. I thought we had Chris Woodhead on the end of the line. Must be son of....
  4. oh.... and he clearly knows nothing about cycling either.
  5. T34

    T34 Lead commenter

    There are no new ideas.
    A so-called 'new idea' is merely an idea which you, yourself had not heard of before.

    With the rapid removal of older teachers which took place in the 90s many ideas were lost. AFL and all the rest are attempts to restore teaching to what it once was.
  6. The important thing gleaned from this discussion is that there is only one way to teach Maths - properly. The use of Afl techniques, VAK etc is a decision a teacher takes as is necessary for a group of pupils.
    I would suggest more time is spent working on structure and working out than developing mental methods for answers. Even A'level students answer questions all over the page with no respect for = signs.
    I work in a State school and too many students do
    a) multiplication by adding numbers
    b) divide by 4 by halving and halving again etc
    c) not believe that 4y + 3 = 2 has an answer
    d) answer all questions horizontally

    If I had my way I would narrow the Primary curriculum to only numeracy and shapes (area/perimeter) and leave the algebra/probability to sec school. That way the emphasis would be on the basics in the place where students will be willing to learn them. Otherwise we will struggle.

    intervention is the buzz word. It should be in the primary schools where it can have a long term effect rather than in targeted groups in Y9 and Y11.

  7. Piranha

    Piranha Star commenter

    Now I am agreeing with you to quite a large extent. We have, at last, acknowledged that AfL etc are not opposed to good teaching practices. It is important that Maths is taught properly, although the method used can still vary between teachers (provided that the end result is students who know what they are doing.)

    I share your concerns about poor setting out of work. The use of '=' as a form of punctuation really irritates me, and is a sign of sloppy thinking. However, I still don't follow you on the use of mental methods for calculations, provided that the methology is set out clearly and accurately. If it is easier to divide by 4 by halving numbers twice, why not do it? The problem lies with teachers who know what to do but don't really understand it, so that students cannot appreciate why it works, or set it out properly.
  8. Re ATTICAN:
    b) divide by 4 by halving and halving again

    What's wrong with this?
  9. I thought everyone taught multiplication by adding numbers - even the Trachtenberg method needs this
  10. Hey did I tell you I got an offer from Cambridge.

    But I rejected them.

    Hey I figured that a university that awards a BA for a maths degree (which is clearly a science BSc) can't be all that good a university if that is there intelligence level. LOL

    Seriously - why do they do this? Are they stupid or something?
  11. HEY - Granny Smythe - YEAAAAAA!!!!!

    You see - you all say I am alone and yet two people here now have agreed. Granny Smith can't make my point clearer.

    To answer your question - I know a teacher like you who does it the way you do it - the right way - but then gives them the BS when the come in for a lesson observation. A manager who didn't like me and who wants to promote all this rubbish was against him and I believe wants to persuade him to change his methods. So when I did a lesson observation I wrote out some very intelligent details on what I saw in the lesson and why it was good for the kids. But if you read between the lines it is all praise due to traditional teaching and why it is so much better than the rubbish being spouted now. I rated him outstanding. Now he has that as an official observation by a teacher should anyone try to pressure him in the future. He knew I knew the right way to teach - so was open with me (but cautious at first) about things. As I said - like you he just gets on with it and blags it.

    Personally - if I was you - in a meeting I would say "do you know how I get such good results". How - they ask. "I used traditional methods and none of this new ****". But they want you to use this new **** and get results too don't they. They make you feel as if you are going against God or something by saying that traditional is best.

    Now we know how Gallelo must have felt walking into a room saying the Earth was round. Like on this form - there will always be a greater majority against things if you are the one who is right. Weird that isn't it - in maths you would expect the opposite!

    To answer your question. What do I do. In my first school I told it how it was. Just like on this forum they didn't like that. I changed schools because I wanted to see if it was like that everywhere - and after coming to this forum I was concerned. Because there is a lot of unethical practice going on - bullying Head's etc etc - and I don't like that. So I needed to see another environment quick. My school where still sad to see me go - because they want to spout all this rubbish but unofficially want teachers to do whatever they have to which gets the school its results but not shout about methods against the norm. Basically - bul*sh*t them. Yea - VAK and AFL are great. How have we lived without them all this time! Picture this - changing your style to their's - your results dropping - the school asking why - you telling them. Now what will they say. Stick with the new ones - or bloody get your results back up - do what you want. We need that 62% A-C this year blah blah blah. But you know what - you - and me - are not the kind of people who can do that. Why? Because that one set of kids shouldn't achieve lover grades than normal to prove a point - that these people are idiots. That is why I mention my qualifications so much. Because it is 95% of the people with lower qualifications who are damaging children with this rubbish. Why should I let them influence my teaching! I am smarter and better than they are - and I can help kids to success at univeristy - something they never had. I don't mean offence to them - but I have no other way to say it than to say it straight - as long as they keep out of telling me how to teach they can teach how they like. I am not saying lets all teach method.

    That is the difference - they want to change me - but I don't want to change them. The difference between successful people and unsuccessful people. Do you think Bill Gates cares what someone else says about how computers should run. But that loser will want Bill Gates to sing to his tune.

    So in my second school I though I woudl try the bulls*it approach for a change so spouted how I loved AFL and VAK etc etc. But I must be a bad liar because they could see through me and knew I preferred method - said they had no problem with this - and when I woudldn't admit that I liked method and still spouted how AFL is cool - they got annoyed with me.

    God - you are dammed if you do and dammed if you don't. Ha Ha Ha.

    I teach my kids my way. For observations - if a teacher like me is observing I teach method. If "one of those" is observing I cut up cards and make paper aeroplanes and dance on the tables and whatever else a geography senior leader thinks is the best way of teaching maths.

    Do what you need to do to keep your job - if you want to teach - try not to let it frustrate you. I certainly know it can.

    Hope that helps!
  12. Ginboy said

    have entered a debate with a 25 yr old know nothing.......... forget my questions little fella i actually don't give a rats ass about any of your opinions or so called successes and am a bit cross at myself for getting in on this forum.

    I guess AGEISM exists after all. If that loser treats me like that - I wonder what he thinks about children's opinions. And some of you said you didn't want to be in my class. Oh Boy!

    But incase you are interested. We have tests ever six weeks. I analyse the data and award levels. i measure percentage change, alalyse by topic area and target grade.

    Jesus - I have a 1st don't you know!

    I tried a six week term of AFL VAK and all that. Grades dropped dramatically and kids said - can't you teach us more normally. I chuckled! I told my HOD. He said - ahh - the reason is is because you are not that good at teaching VAK etc yet. Stick with that method though - that produces these lower results. After 5 years you should be back to the level of results you were at before.

    I chuckled again - and went back to METHOD METHOD METHOD. But didn't tell him. Six weeks later - oh look - I have mastered VAK quicker than expected. Wel done Joe Bloggs!

  13. maths126

    maths126 New commenter

    Please don't use such gratuitous blasphemy in your posts.
    Hope you can still make it to the Get Together on 3rd November.
  14. Definition of science: "A systematic study using observation, experiment, and measurement, of physical and social phenomena, or any specific area involving such a study."

    Definition of mathematics: "The study of the measurement, properties, and relationships of quantities and sets, using numbers and symbols."

    I pity the fool who cannot distinguish between these!
  15. jnboy1 not ginboy you dipshi******t

    Got a first but can't read......
  16. JB - you have stated in a recent reply that you won't answer questions from people who were rude to you on this forum. Fair enough - I can understand where you come from on that.

    In post 101 I answered some questions from you abut the source of some statistics I had mentioned that contradicted some statements you had made.

    My reply was polite (I hope) and I asked for the source of your statistics. You have not yet provided details of the source of your stats.

    This may because the forum has taken off or it may be that you overlooked my post.

    I look forward to a rely soon.

    Many thanks.
  17. JB, I think jnboy1 was refering to your relative lack of teaching experience rather than your age.

    I find it worrying that you will not accept the possibility that other teachers successfully use a variety of other methods while maintaining or improving performance. This is a very blinkered viewpoint.

    There is clear evidence in this thread that other methods are successful. In fact, you state "... two people here now have agreed", so three out of all the posters in this thread is hardly an overwhelming voice for Method, Method... .

    Perhaps your ex-PT was correct, although I am not sure if you wrote his comment sarcastically or not, maybe you need to improve your teaching practice in AifL, VAK, etc?

    As I said in an earlier post, some teachers have strengths in particular methods, some can balance a variety of methods, some are not so effective in some or any methods.

    Teaching method, I think, is easy. Balancing and blending a variety of methods effectively to suit the pupils in front of you is much harder, requires more preparation and planning but ultimately when done well, I have found is more rewarding for both pupils and teachers. Enjoyment, motivation and performance have all improved in our dept.

    Our results have continuously improved at all levels, particularly over the last four years. It is in the last four years that we have increasingly used AifL, VAK, cooperative learning, etc.

    There is still a place for Method, Method, .. however, they key is BALANCE.

    I would be very worried if a teacher in my department was a one trick pony and was not open to other learning and teaching styles.

  18. oh and i value my children's opinions because they tend to be open minded and polite....... hmmmmmm
  19. I'm getting so bored of all this!
  20. I'm not getting bored of this.

    I am wondering why you didn't come up to Cambridge. You obviously consider that qualifications are very important. Why not get your qualification from one of the best?

    And your question about whether it should be BSc or not is laughable. Dirac,Newton, Turing, Russell and some bloke called Stephen Hawking all seem to think Cambridge was ok.

    But seriously, you seem a bit worried. A lot of very helpful and , mostly, sensible people are disagreeing quite strongly with you. Your points so far don't seem to have converted them. If anything they are merely amused by your childish statements. So if these people are quite intelligent but not swayed by your argument then either your point is not valid or your method is weak.

    Just repeating your qualifications doesn't seem to be working. Have you got a different method you could use?

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