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Please help - acceleration, enrichment and extension

Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by taspat, Mar 7, 2011.

  1. Hi

    I am a Primary PGCE trainee and I am going to be conducting a small scale research looking at teachers' perceptions towards provision types for mathematically gited children. The provision types are acceleration, enrichment and extension.

    When reading the literature on this topic, I found out that there are no clear definitions available for the provision types, in particular enrichment and extension. In fact a few researchers have written about this. Some researchers have combined enrichment and extension as one and some researchers believe that extension is to accelerate.

    What I would like to find out is what teachers think these provision type mean. Please could you help me by telling me what you think accelaration, enrichment and extension mean. Which of these provision types do you use with your mathematically gifted children and why. Also which types of activities do you use?

    Thank you in advance.
  2. At primary level acceleration would be giving the child the work of the the year groups ahead of them. This might be done by bumping them up a year or two for maths or by getting the work from the year above for them to do in their own lesson.
    Extension would be give the child work that extends beyond what the most of the class are doing, so same topic, harder work.
    Erichment is wider work the child wouldn't otherwise have done.

    I'll just stick those definitions down and then other can agree/disagree/modify.

    It's easy to see how acceleration and extension could overlap.
  3. bombaysapphire

    bombaysapphire Star commenter

    http://nrich.maths.org/about The above is the best one-stop shop for sources of enrichment.
    As a secondary teacher I would rather students at Primary level were enriched rather than accelerated.
    In secondary we set which means that students should be working at an appropriate pace for their ability. This works for all but the exceptional. Accelerating them can be isolating and if students come out with their GSCE and A Levels early what then? Enriching allows them to work along side their peers but develop a love of the subject together with an in depth understanding and the ability to make links between areas of Maths.
    Tony Gardiner's Maths Challenge series are also very good.
  4. Thank you for your reply!
    It would be interesting to see if other people agree or disagree with these definitions.
    Do you teach any mathematically gifted children? If yes, do you use one provision type or a range of provision types? What kind of activities would you use for enrichment?
  5. I love this website! In my last placement I had quite a few gifted children and this website really helped.

    I'm glad you mentioned this!

    How would you enrich their learning?
    What is your view on the provision type "extension"?

  6. I totally agree. I am a secondary maths teacher and find that a lot of students are gifted and bright but lack total rigidity in their maths. I would love to see lots of enrichment work that all the students can engage in but that different students get different things out of. I am also very aware that as a maths specialist that can be daunting and tricky in a class and therefore very difficult for a primary teacher to tackle. Nrich have some lovely activities with lots of guidance and explanation - they are also totally approachable for support and help in using their resources. The biggest challenge for maths teachers is to get students to think, apply their knowledge and make links - and any extension/enrichment activity that achieves that is brilliant for all students. Making the maths fun, interesting and relevant is more important (I think) than pushing them to achieve more and more.
  7. i run a maths gat programme for year 3 to 7, and ahave done same for rec to y2 in past, but this is going to be a week from hell - can talk to you in more detail at weekend - how urgently do you need info?
  8. oh - and where are you geographically?
  9. I did some research on this years ago when my school wanted to early enter ( I did not) I can send you some stuff I found ifyou send me an email address, might help, might not!
  10. trinity0097

    trinity0097 New commenter

    I have found that most able mathematicians I have taught (middle years) prefer to be accelerated rather than enriched as they want to learn more techniques and move onto harder work, rather than applying their knowledge, which is harder (i.e. children being children prefer the easy option which is to study harder topics!).

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