Saturday, 8 July 2017
Here's an update on my inquiry for maths. This term, my key focus was fractions. I am happy to say that we had a successful term learning fractions!
I want to have an honest chat about Maths Whizz. Last year, as a new teacher, I was introduced to this maths programme. I didn't know how useful Maths Whizz was and sometimes used it as a time filler. I didn't focus much on the progress that students made on this and didn't pay enough attention to what my students were learning on it. As a result, my class wasn't very motivated when using Maths Whizz and possibly didn't make as much progress on it as they could have.
This year, however, I learnt that Maths Whizz is an amazing learning tool! I've been tracking students' progress daily and make sure to show their progress on our screen so they can see how they're doing. I often set focus tasks for the class on Maths Whizz, depending on what we're learning at the time. I find this really useful, as it gives them another opportunity to practice what they have recently learnt with me. Maths Whizz is also very useful when I'm trying to find the gaps (and strengths) in students' learning. It shows me everything they have learnt so far and highlights what they have been struggling with.
Every Friday we have prizes for the students that make the most progress on Maths Whizz and I encourage my class to aim to get the 'green tick' by Friday. As you can see on slide 4, my class has made great progress on Maths Whizz this year! They began the year with making an average of 0.9 progressions a week, and in June they made an average of 3.6 progressions a week. Very proud of them and happy to see that they're excited to use Maths Whizz.
My goal for next term is to spend more time teaching strand maths. After a PD meeting with Jo Knox, I realised that strand is a huge gap in my teaching. I also realised how much weight strand maths has when making a maths OTJ for our year 5 and 6 students. I plan to begin by teaching measurement, and am currently trying to think of creative ways to do this!