James and Louise play a game of pool. Louise strikes the ball at a 45-degree angle and watches with great fascination to see how many times the ball bounces against the cushion. She wonders if the number of bounces would change if she had a bigger or a smaller pool table. She drags James around countless pool halls, keeping a record in a hand-drawn tally chart attached to her clipboard, until she believes that she has collected enough data to find a pattern. After several hours of puzzling, Louise finds a rule and is able to use this rule to find out how many bounces there will be on any pool table in the world!
Three students from Bredon Hill Academy in Evesham, Worcestershire, won the BP Ultimate STEM Challenge at an event today at the Science Museum in London. The three girls – Amelie, Cathryn and Hattie – were praised by the judges for the way they took inspiration from flying animals to find solutions to an engineering design challenge.
Young children are naturally curious about the world around them. We need to harness that love of discovery and encourage a passion for Science from a young age. At the heart of this lies inspiring teaching. This is why the free Reach Out CPD programme, a resource from Tigtag and Imperial College London, is invaluable for schools.
Learning Resources, a manufacturer and supplier of innovative educational tools and learning aids, have produced a range of engaging products that support the Maths Mastery approach to learning, designed to enhance understanding and enjoyment, as well as raising attainment for all children.
Alzheimer’s Research UK, the UK’s leading dementia research, charity has launched a curriculum-linked learning programme to help 11-14 year olds lift the lid on brain science and inspire the next generation of dementia researchers. Brain Box, developed alongside the National Schools Partnership, helps teachers to develop their pupils’ scientific enquiry skills at Key Stage 3 with online content, researcher blogs, videos, games and research case studies.
For our pupils to become able and confident mathematicians in Primary school, it is essential that they have a bank of key number facts they have learnt stored away, which they can draw on at any time. However, we must work to incorporate new ways to help them memorise these facts so that they have them at their disposal whenever they’re needed.
Education is a field ripe for change. A confluence of influences has altered both our purposes and methods. New technologies have altered what is possible, shifted our interactions with knowledge and allowed for new models of connectedness. The forces of globalisation, and with that the movement of both manufacturing workforces and increasingly routine cognitive labour away from Western nations, is altering the face of work in these nations. Our children will leave school requiring a different set of skills to those that secured them employment but a short time ago.
Imagine Mr Jones, an urban schoolteacher who has been teaching eight-and nine-year-olds for the past five years. The few times he has introduced his students to a learning app or digital game, they have nearly levitated off their chairs with excitement. But he couldn’t get past the gee-whiz factor. The feeling that edtech was entertaining, but not germane to his teaching.