What is it?
Yet another dip into the wonderful world of resources created by primary teachers, which has proved so fruitful this year to find quality activities I can use with my secondary school students. This one is a classic. For me, the start of the lesson is absolutely crucial. For too long in my career precious minutes were lost to taking in the register, collecting in homework, or making sure Josh had a pen. These minutes add up over the course of a week, term or year. A good starter activity, ready and waiting for students when they arrive can solve all this. Better still, if the questions are designed to revise key skills that are the fundamental underpinnings to many different areas of maths, then you essentially get three benefits for the price of one: a focussed start to the lesson; revision of key concepts; and the benefits of the Spacing Effect (link to: https://www.tes.com/teaching-resources/blog/tes-maths-pedagogy-place-spacing) . This resource is exactly what I have been crying out for.
How can it be used?
This series of daily practice questions cover the four operations, fractions, place value, powers, simple algebra, unit conversions, and more. They can be printed out and left of students’ desks as they enter the room, or simply projected on the board to save paper and protect that precious photocopying budget. The author has written a really useful blog post explaining how to get the most out of these resources. I particularly enjoyed the part about going through the answers:
After the 5 minutes, I will go through the answers immediately with them. I won’t go through the methods for all the questions; I often have the answers to 4 of them ready on the IWB to show them straight away. This will obviously rotate throughout the week – Monday I might go through addition/BIDMAS/dividing by 100/division, Tuesday: multiplication/BIDMAS/subtraction/addition of fractions etc. This keeps the time down and keeps it a little bit fresh each day. My feedback is never teaching them new skills; you can’t possibly do it in the time and you won’t do it justice, hence only stick with what they (should) know. I don’t take results in or anything as it’s important to make the children aware it’s not a test!
This is a super resource that I will enjoying using with my Year 7s next year.
Thanks so much for sharing