“Mathematics equips pupils with a uniquely powerful set of tools to understand and change the world. These tools include logical reasoning, problem-solving skills, and the ability to think in abstract ways.
Mathematics is important in everyday life. Different cultures have contributed to the development and application of mathematics. Today, the subject transcends cultural boundaries and its importance is universally recognised.
Mathematics is a creative discipline. It can stimulate moments of pleasure and wonder when a pupil solves a problem for the first time, discovers a more elegant solution to that problem, or suddenly sees hidden connections.”
QCA Website, 2006
We recognize the importance of a good knowledge and understanding of the principles of mathematics, for itself, for use in other subjects or for everyday life. We are particularly keen for pupils to enjoy mathematics and feel confident in its use whenever the need arises.
There are three dedicated main school mathematics rooms; all have interactive whiteboards. There is also a dedicated Sixth Form teaching room located in the Norbury building, which has a projector.
At KS3, we follow the principles of the National Numeracy Strategy and the National Curriculum. At GCSE, we follow the OCR Linear course, which has two terminal papers at the end of Year 11.
At GCSE, we have changed to a modular scheme. Students will take the first examination at the end of Year 10, the second in January of Year 11 and the final examination at the end of Year 11. We follow the OCR Higher course.
At A Level, all students take four pure mathematical units and one each of mechanics, statistics or Decision Mathematics, giving a balanced A Level. There is also the option, for the most able, of taking A Level Further Mathematics.
Pupils are taught in sets from the beginning of Year 8, based on KS2 results and internal assessment, with their Year 7 teacher making sure each pupil is in the correct set; in Year 7 pupils are taught in forms. These sets are reviewed periodically each year and pupils move sets as appropriate.
At KS3, pupils identified as needing additional support are given the opportunity to attend a weekly Mathematics Support Club. They are given their own support mentor, usually a student from Year 10 or above, who will work through any areas of mathematics that the pupil finds difficult. It is closely monitored by a member of staff who ensures that each pupil is given the individual support they require.
We also run a Mathematics a Jaguar Cars Club using software to simulate Formula One racing. We enter the national competition and have attended the finals on two occasions.
For KS4 and 5 students, we have a workshop drop in session, should they need extra support in any area of their course.
The department has access to various software packages, to enhance learning experiences. These include a Logo turtle package and Geometer’s Sketchpad for shape and space activities, as well as a dedicated graphing package. Wherever possible, we endeavour to use ICT to make topics easier to understand and to give a practical experience of their use. The department also has a set of graphical calculators for use across all key stages.
There are five members of staff; Mr Ainsworth, Mrs Allen, Miss Reid, Mrs Brooks and Mrs Vowles.