Mathematics is essential to everyday life; critical to science, technology and engineering; and necessary for financial literacy and most forms of employment. At stanborough we are committed to developing excellent teaching and learning in mathematics, incorporating a wide range of approaches to ensure students enjoy and succeed at mathematics. We aim to provide students with a solid understanding of mathematical concepts which will help them in their further studies and careers, as well as in their exams.
Head of Department: Mr S Modi
Maths website URL: https://stanborough.wixsite.com/maths
What will students study?
Over the course of Key Stage 3, our aim is to ensure students become fluent in the fundamentals of math, through varied and frequent practice with increasingly complex problems over time. This supports our students to develop conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge rapidly and accurately.
During their eight one hour maths lessons a fortnight in Year 7 and in Year 8, students will be supported to reason mathematically by following a line of enquiry, conjecturing relationships and generalisations, and developing an argument, justification or proof using mathematical language. It is vital students can solve problems by applying their maths to a variety of routine and non-routine problems with increasing sophistication, including breaking down problems into a series of simpler steps and persevering in seeking solutions.
This is the Key Stage when the GCSE maths curriculum will be delivered. This begins from the start of Year 9. Students will have nine one hour maths lessons a fortnight in Year 9 and Year 10. In Year 11 they will have eight one hour maths lessons. On the basis of performance in the end of Year 8 exams, students will be placed in a Higher or Foundation GCSE class. Depending on their performance, confidence, attitude and effort, set changes will be carried out. Students will be given a formal assessment to complete once every term.
Students will follow the Edexcel 9-1 curriculum, details of which (subject content and assessment objectives) can be found on the maths website. Students will sit their GCSE in maths, which will be in the form of three 80 mark papers – one non-calculator paper and two calculator papers, at the end of Year 11. There are no controlled assessments or coursework in maths. Please remember that the course content for the new GCSE has increased in size.
In Year 9, along with extending their learning in the topics taught in Key Stage 3, students will also get opportunities to clear any gaps in their understanding of the topics learnt in Key Stage 3.
In Year 10, students will build on the skills in topics learnt in previous years and also learn new topics from the GCSE syllabus.
In Year 11, the top end topics will be delivered in order to ensure that students are provided with the opportunity to achieve the highest possible grade. Students will also sit mock exams in the months of November and March which will help them and teachers to measure their understanding and progress.
Students can study A Level Maths and Further Maths or the Level 3 qualification Core Maths.
A Level Maths builds from GCSE level maths and introduces calculus and its applications, mechanics and advanced statistics. It emphasises how mathematical ideas are interconnected and how maths can be applied to model situations mathematically. It prepares students for further study and employment in a wide range of disciplines involving the use of maths.
Further Maths is designed for students who are planning to take a degree in disciplines such as mathematics, engineering, the sciences, economics, etc. As well as learning new areas of pure maths students will study further applications of maths in mechanics and decision maths. The qualification is both deeper and broader than A Level Maths. AS and A Level Further Maths build on, and may only be studied alongside, AS and A Level Maths.
Students who do not choose to study A Level maths may choose to study Core maths which is equivalent in size and UCAS points to an AS and is designed to maintain and develop real-life maths skills. The content is not purely theoretical or abstract; it can be applied on a day-to-day basis in work, study or life. It will also help with other A Level subjects – in particular with science, geography, business studies, psychology and economics.
The skills developed in the study of maths are increasingly important in the workplace and in higher education. There is evidence that students who study maths after GCSE improve their career choices and increase their earning potential.
How can I support my child in this subject?
KS3 and KS4
Encourage your child to complete their homework, which will be set every week. Details of these can be found on ClassCharts. Also encourage your child to review the work done in lessons using their exercise books or by using the Collins Connect website which is available for Year 7, Year 8 and Year 9 students (login details will be provided to students by their teachers). Another website which students can use is www.bbcbitesize.co.uk. This website allows free access to all students. Students will be able to take advantage of two other websites: www.mymaths.co.uk and www.vle.mathswatch.co.uk, which have tutorials and practice exercises on all KS3 and GCSE topics. Access details will be provided to all the students by their teachers.
Depending on staffing we will also run an after school maths club. Students can attend these sessions to complete a piece of homework, to revisit a topic that they struggled with during a lesson or to do revision. At least three teachers will usually be present to support students.
Although you may not feel that you are able to help directly with the maths taught at A Level, it will still be useful to take an interest and encourage your child to take advantage of the many sources of support available to them. Homework details will be uploaded on ClassCharts and students can use the Integral online resources (www.integralmaths.org – login details will be provided to students by their teachers) for revision, consolidation and independent learning.
It is essential that students stay on top of the work from the beginning of the course. Revision should be an ongoing process and must not be left until the period immediately before exams. Textbooks, class notes, the websites mentioned above and extra support sessions offered every lunchtime in the Sixth Form area will all help students to consolidate their learning throughout the course.
What equipment does my child need in this subject?
Students are required to have the same stationery equipment in line with Stanborough School expectations. In addition, students will require a compass, protractor and a scientific calculator (Casio Fx-83GTX or Fx85GTX)
Celebrating successes in this subject
Students who show an interest in and aptitude for maths are entered in the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust Maths Challenges at the appropriate level each year. This is a national competition in which the top performers are awarded Bronze, Silver and Gold certificates and the highest scorers qualify for additional follow-on rounds. Over half of the Stanborough students entered each year earn certificates and we normally have at least one follow-on round qualifier from each challenge. Very occasionally, outstanding performance in follow-on rounds has led to invitations to join external mentoring schemes and prestigious summer schools.
A number of students in each year group are selected to represent the school in team math competitions. In Years 7 and 8, two teams of four students compete in the Hertfordshire County Team Challenges and these have gone on to the final of the competition on several occasions. A mixed team of Year 8 and Year 9 students take part in the UKMT Team Maths Challenge Regional Final each year, which is always very competitive. We also enter two teams in the AMSP Year 10 Team Maths Competition and one in the UKMT/ AMSP Senior Maths Challenge each year.
Extra-Curricular Activities and Visits
Trips are a regular occurrence in maths for students in all key stages. In addition to team competitions, students attend Maths Inspiration shows as well as other popular lectures, such as those hosted by the London Mathematical Society and the Cambridge Science Festival. Students regularly attend Year 10 and Year 12 Enrichment Days organised by the Advanced Maths Support Programme and the Millennium Maths Project.
A maths enrichment club meets weekly to enable students of all ages to work on extended projects, play mathematical games and solve mathematical problems and puzzles.