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Maths After School Club KS4

Discussion in 'Secondary' started by bethanypaige, Aug 8, 2017.

  1. bethanypaige

    bethanypaige New commenter


    In my new role as Head of KS4 I have been asked to set up a maths after school club for our KS4 cohort. I am looking at targeting the most able to improve motivation and engagement but I am struggling for ideas. I have looked at the UKMT challenges, etc. but I don't think they cater for our students.

    Any ideas for a successful, engaging after school club would be much appreciated!
  2. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Yes, that's the idea - just what schools need: more Maths!! :eek:

    (Sorry, not what you're looking for, but the whole idea of a 'Maths club' for overworked KS4 pupils fills me with nausea...)
    hammie, saluki and DYNAMO67 like this.
  3. bethanypaige

    bethanypaige New commenter

    Our KS4 starts in Year 9, where students are definitely not overworked, in fact, this is where they seem to lose motivation as they see year 11 as being soooooo far away! Therefore, motivating them at this crucial time and opening up a side of mathematics outside the classroom that can encourage their investigation skills is just what they need. :)
  4. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Well, I feel sorry for your students.

    Too much Maths taught in schools, mostly poorly in my experience (state, comprehensive, selective and independent schools), IMHO.

    Let's broaden the curriculum, rather than trying to force more and more into the poor pupils...
    hammie and DYNAMO67 like this.
  5. bethanypaige

    bethanypaige New commenter

    You seems to be against Maths? The whole point is to broaden the curriculum, as is the new GCSE specification. The whole idea is to engage students and share/promote a love of learning for the subject. I can't help but wonder if you would be opposed to English/Geography/History/ICT/etc. starting an after school club?
  6. FrankWolley

    FrankWolley Star commenter

    Not really, I just feel that most schools - certainly all those I taught in - gave Maths a more than fair share of the teaching time. I'd like to see a broader, more varied curriculum.
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  7. frustum

    frustum Star commenter

    I'm not convinced that a KS4 "maths club" will lead to increased motivation and engagement of the ablest in maths lessons - you're only likely to attract the ones who are already motivated, and if they're not engaging in lessons it's probably because they're not being stretched enough in those lessons.

    The Cipher Challenge (https://www.cipherchallenge.org/) would be worth considering - perhaps run a club specifically aiming towards that (start a few weeks earlier and look at coding a bit in advance). You needn't label it "maths club" and it might grab the interest of some of those who are able but disinterested. Perhaps even invite specific pupils to be on a team - flattery helps!
  8. muso2

    muso2 Occasional commenter Community helper

    I like frustrum's idea above. Doing a club that uses maths skills but gives students different and broader than they do in the classroom sounds more motivating and likely to attract a wider range of students. Could you maybe collaborate with colleagues in science or computing?
  9. bethanypaige

    bethanypaige New commenter

    Is the Ciper Challenge beginning again next year, there's nothing on the website?

    A STEM club would definitely be something I'd consider!
  10. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    So are you saying that other subjects DO manage to ' engage students and share / promote a love of learning ' in your setting ? Perhaps the Maths curruculum does not lend itself to relevance / problem with how it's taught / so you have students saying quite understandably ' what's in it for me ? ' (and their only motivation is a an exam grade in Y11 which is par for the course but not helpful . Suspect that for many students the non love affair with Maths may start earlier than Y9 so you need to address this ... ' effective ' learners do not 'compartmentalise' sooooo a cross curricula project involving problem solving, communication skills, team work and using information would ideally be worth pursuing , don't you think ?
  11. DYNAMO67

    DYNAMO67 Lead commenter

    Exactly this. You are barking up the wrong tree for me, also. The only thing I would do is offer a 'further maths' sort of option for those who you predict a grade 8/9. If they want to do extra, go for it.

    I agree with @FrankWolley though. So much time is dedicated to maths in the curriculum as it is. Should we really be pushing maths as an extra curricular option. Also, other than PE, where teachers rightly run groups in lieu of planning/marking, is it fair to ask staff to run such a club with pressure on time that exists?
  12. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    I think that when new in post folk want to be seen to be doing the right thing / addressing ' issues ' and Maths @ KS4 is obviously ' it ' . My point is that too often folk want to rush headlong into the ' task 'rather than look at the bigger picture ? Agee re curriculum time . I was a linguist expected to ' get resorts ' on far less contact time :(
    DYNAMO67 likes this.
  13. minnie me

    minnie me Star commenter

    Oops results
  14. hammie

    hammie Lead commenter

    I would have hated an after school Maths club when I was that age, the whole point of clubs was to do something extra or different. I loved the computer club, it was all very new indeed then and of course everyone learned to program. Perhaps you could do some sort of computer programming using genuine coding, very mathematical, especially if you get into graphics. More than anything I loved cricket club, especially when we were at games with our radio and Botham was bashing the Aussies all round Headingly!
    Speaking as a teacher, running clubs very different to my subject has also helped me to teach the less keen over many years. Get your homework in or you're sub next week has a very quick result!
    I was "encouraged" to run a puzzle club at one school. It bored the pants off of me! I'd been inside my little box all day and needed to get outside for some air!
    Oh, take an idea from our Primary colleagues, ask the cohort if they want an advanced Maths club and what they would like to do when there. Or are they already going to be tied up at revision and coursework clubs every night anyhow?
    Finally, please bear in mind my niece and those like her. Identified as potentially "exceeding" her new secondary provided so many extra inputs and homework, clubs etc etc, She had a breakdown and went form loving school to stopping going to school completely. In fact she could not leave her house for a time.
  15. hammie

    hammie Lead commenter

    on a sightly more positive input, listening to the radio yesterday. one of the presenters of "Sky at Night" said they (his university) get so much data from photos that they need volunteers to count things. So they have a body of volunteers counting and analysing all sorts of pictures and data. Real life stuff rather than made up. Might be worth investigating.
    closer to home, get them to organise fixtures for inter class comps. I used to love doing that sort of practical applications.
    Or they might enjoy teaching top end Year 7 and 8 pupils, they often get completely ignored when they move from primary to sec.

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