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MON: Using Open Access Maths Learning To Innovate UK Primary Curriculum (Amy Marshall)

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Amy MARSHALL
17 January 2018

In 2014 the UK government (DfE:2014) re-vamped the national curriculum implementing ICT use across all lessons. However, lack of funding, understanding and time to utilise technology during lessons has led to lack of innovation in the teaching of Primary level mathematics in the UK. Use of an open-access website to take over the ‘lecture’ section of maths lessons could revolutionise the facilitation of primary age children learning mathematics. Consequently, a variety of scenarios involving pupil’s interactions with open access website technology can:

  • free up teacher talk time
  • allow for greater depth individual, peer and group learning
  • allow for more one-to-one learning
  • allow wider community access to primary mathematics learning

My project to create the MathsDoor - an innovative multimedia website to aid the teaching and learning of mathematical concepts in the primary classroom has been developing since November 2017. The MathsDoor project intends to bring together freely accessible resources from the internet and link them in groups according to curriculum targets. The idea being that teachers can invite students to engage with the multimedia to pre-teach, learn, or master a mathematical concept alongside completing work offline, as they normally would in lessons. Whilst this may not seem revolutionary, as Heppell (2001) conjectured: ‘subjugating technology into present practice,’ has been commonplace for many years; however, exchanging the emphasis from teacher to student during the ‘lecture’ part of a maths lesson is not widely practiced in my ten years of primary teaching experience.

I have discussed the MathsDoor project concept with staff members at the local primary school where I work, who are interested in the idea of students being more in control of their mathematics learning and themselves being free to engage smaller groups or individuals. The school has agreed to complete a few trial lessons utilising the website, the outcomes of which, my presentation will focus on.  The purpose being, to invite discussion as to whether it is pertinent to continue developing the MathsDoor open access website and if it is a plausible proposition for innovating maths learning in the UK primary classroom. A short multimedia tour of the developed areas of the website will be given, as well as a presentation of the trials carried out in school and their analysis.

 I hope to engage you all in a discussion on February 19th at 9pm and thereafter. A preview of the MathsDoor website can be found at www.mathsdoor.weebly.com.  

DfE (2014) National Curriculum in England: Programme of Mathematical Studies [Online] Available from: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/national-curriculum-in-england-mathematics-programmes-of-study/national-curriculum-in-england-mathematics-programmes-of-study [Accessed: November 18th 2017]

Heppell S (2006) Can ICT Win the World Cup for England? [Online] Available from: http://www.heppell.net/weblog/stephen/ [Accessed: December 30th 2017]

 

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