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Discussion in 'Mathematics' started by scentless_apprentice, Jan 24, 2011.

  1. I might (might) be able to put my hands on some money for new textbooks.
    I'd like to get some for KS3 - anyone got any recommendations?
  2. I might (might) be able to put my hands on some money for new textbooks.
    I'd like to get some for KS3 - anyone got any recommendations?
  3. googolplex

    googolplex Occasional commenter

    We always use elmwood press. No stupid gimmicks, no pointless explanations and worked examples, but lots of practical exercises, clearly written by maths teachers who know that, when learning, say, to solve equations, an exercise with three questions and a silly coloured margin featuring APP rubbish, just won't do the job... They also have the virtue of being cheaper than the competition. (I don't work for them - but the books work well for me)
  4. There is a real shortage of good quality textbooks in maths, the majority being dull as ditch water. I look with envy at the resources some subjects have. Many books are written towards the top end anyhow, I've seen very little of quality for low attainers. Thanks to googolplex for the headsup on the Elmwood books, I'd not heard of them before.
  5. Can you VLE this stuff so you don't have to photocopy?
  6. Due to budget constraints, we had to go for sharing books between classes, so, a book for each pupil but the books stay in school and get used by both year halves. It has been far from ideal but there wasn't much choice. What other profession would have to make do with so little money for resources?

    Regarding the lack of textbooks, lower groups tend to be pretty small and so sales of textbooks for them would be limited, hence the lack of interest in producing the books. Now that we have two tier at KS4, I've found many of the textbooks don't cater for grades E and below in any meaningful way.
  7. googolplex

    googolplex Occasional commenter

    The lower the ability range, I find the less suitable textbook tasks are. Lots more hands-on, varied activities for them. We buy in sets of textbooks, sufficient for one between two, plus a handful of extras. Kids don't keep them. We do. Hence, they stay in better condition, and become more cost effective. There's so much other help online, these days, and via the VLE, that the need for a textbook at home is virtually non-existent. Hence, my earlier quip about textbooks which waste time with pointless explanations - (pointless) explanations are my job...!!!!!
  8. I must point out upfront that, as OCR's chap responsible for this specification, you really would want to investigate this yourself rather than just taking my word for it, but these books from Hodder are for the new OCR linear, where the content is divided up into six incremental stages. There are three books with two stages in each. Book 1 covers the 'foundation only' stuff, Book 2 the 'higher/foundation overlap' stuff and Book 3 the 'higher only' stuff. A number of schools are just going to use Book 1 with their lowest sets and adopt a range of strategies for coping with/explaining/accepting the fact that there will be about 30% of the foundation papers not covered. Plus some of the overlapping D/C topics - scatter graphs is probably the best example - can also still be worth some marks for the lowest ability students.
    I should also point out that we don't make commission from textbook sales, and aren't owned by a publisher etc etc - so please shop around! For example you will also find that SMP Interact works in a similar staged way.
    Hope this is useful.
    PS - With my maths-teacher-rather-than-OCR hat on: another vote from me for Elmwood Press Essential Maths at KS3 - a very good all-rounder with plenty of practice. Also liked SMP Interact, particularly for algebra.
  9. Firstly about the VLE - we don't have one. We're still stuck in the 90's regarding ICT here. Shameful but true.
    I will probably order enough for a half-and-a-bit of a year group so that if there's any overlap we'll be covered.
    Having used SMP Interact before I'm a fan, I'll probably go down that route for KS4 if the money's available - does anyone know if they've been revised in line with 'new spec'?
    Elmwood Press looks to be the winner for KS3 though!
  10. Elmwood have sent me an evaluation pack today. Impressed. Lots of practice and cheap.
    Now it's time to beg for pennies!
  11. Thanks for the headsup kevchenko. We are doing AQA but I'll certainly have a look at the Hodder books. Good luck to scentless_apprentice in your bid for cash.

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