Beginning modular origami with the Sonobe unit.

January 22, 2017

 

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Above is a Spiked Pentakis Dodecahedron! If you had shown this to me a few weeks ago and asked if I could make one, I’d have laughed and said,’NO!’ But what I have learned while ‘playing’ with Modular Origami, is that once you have mastered the basic unit, you just need to keep practising. I used ‘Youtube’ and watched various videos about the different shapes you can create and began to practise putting them together.

I had started out wanting to find a fun way to make a cube, with out the need for glue. Looking on line, I discovered, Modular Origami and the Sonobe Unit.

The Sonobe Unit was first created in the early 1970’s by Mitsunobu Sonobe and since then there have been many different variations created. These units are then put together to create a wonderful range of polyhedra.

The instructions I used for creating the Sonobe Unit were from this weblink –http://mathcraft.wonderhowto.com/how-to/modular-origami-make-cube-octahedron-icosahedron-from-sonobe-units-0131460/

These images might also help you work through the making of the unit and can be used to explore and talk about the Maths you can see at each step of their creation.

51PR4GpAYkL._SX384_BO1,204,203,200_This is a wonderful book with many stunning creations and the first two chapters are all about creations using sonobe units and variations of them.

These charts by Meenakshi Mukerji, which appear in the book were really useful and helped me to know how many units were needed for each shape.

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sonobe2Click on the images to open them up. You can also see that some of the sonobe units I made were with paper that was coloured on the reverse and for these units I folded the paper slightly differently to create the coloured stripes.

The trickiest shape I created required 90 units to create a dodecahedron.

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Now, I want to learn how to make some more modular origami creations and I have started playing with a variety of different papers. The black and white papers work really well and created shapes with an ‘Escheresc’ feel to them. I’ve also had a play with using tracing paper and gluing decopatch paper to it before cutting it into squares.

The ever evolving nature of the learning journey I’ve gone through in these early days of playing with modular origami has been fascinating and now I want to keep learning and producing more creations.

 


Christmas Tree puzzle

November 19, 2016

This simple game is based on Nim 7 – https://nrich.maths.org/1204

It is a great game for encouraging children to think and problem solve. Can they work out a winning strategy? Can they explain it? The game can be made harder by increasing the numbers … What happens if you had 12 baubles and a star? What would happen if the total was an even number?

Draw or print the tree below. Play with a partner. Each player adds 1 or 2 baubles / stars – the winner is the player who puts the last decoration on the tree.

Nim Tree


Maths Christmas Cards

November 19, 2016

My favourite Maths Christmas card, I have usually made using LEGO wrapping paper, as in the instruction booklet below. However you can make it with any wrapping paper – the paper with a square grid on the back works especially well and helps children to cut the required squares.
Click on the tree below to open the instruction ebook.
LEGO Tree Christmas Card instructions.

This year, in my new role with Mathletics, I wanted to create a card for the schools that I am lucky enough to work with. I used https://tagul.com/ – a fabulous word cloud website and made a list of all the Maths related words I could think of. Here’s the resulting image –
Word Cloud 1


Advent Maths

November 9, 2016

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Click on a bauble and see what you link to! Each bauble will link you to a Maths activity or website with a festive theme. Enjoy!


Inspiration from the Romanian football team.

June 22, 2016

Roamanian shirts

While Romania may have been knocked out of Euro 2016, they remain the most inspiration team, in my opinion! Watch this amazing video which shows you what the team have been doing for the children in their country.

In my last blog post, I mentioned that in most of my assemblies, when I ask children if they can think of any job where Maths isn’t needed, I nearly always get the answer ‘footballer!’  But this team is dispelling this myth and helping to get children engaged in Maths.

We’ve seen the posters with famous people reading in schools – now we need to look for inspirational figures to show children how maths is part of our everyday life, and also what fun we can have with it.

Inspired by the video I have created a very simple sheet, which Mathletics has made available.
Click here http://www.3plearning.com/uk/mathletics/euro2016-worksheets/  and they will email you the sheet.

The sheet comprises 25 blank football shirts and the task is to creat an equation for each number. It’s an open ended task, so it can be used by all year groups, and as as school, it would be interesting to see how the shirts changed as you progressed up the years. It would be fun to see how many different ways you could create a particular number, and then ask the children which one they think is the trickest equation to solve and why.

Once the sheets have been created, I would suggest marking each shirt on the back with a team name (or the child’s name) so that you can identify that set of shirts. Chop the sheet up into individual shirts and then they can be used as playing cards. Alternatively the sheets could be printed on a mix of coloured paper.

With them as cards, you could create all kinds of games, from a simple snap kind of game, where you turned the card over and answered the equation, and the person with the highest number took the pair.  You could create memory type games – turning 2 teams of cards over and trying to find the pair. Games could even be divised that could be played between year groups, or as knock out challenges to create your own Euro Maths 2016 type of competition.

The variations are endless…. most importantly, enjoy Maths and love learning!

Share your teams on Twitter, don’t forget to hashtag #euromaths and @Mathletics3PL

For another bit of football related inspiration – watch this video. What does it teach you about what can be achieved when you have a goal? What can you achieve with grit and determination.


#Talk on the Tyne

June 9, 2016

It’s so difficult to get your message across in 5minutes, so I’ve been giving it a go at home! Above is the video, so if I’m tongue tied and nervous tonight, the video will give you a idea of what I wanted to share.

It’s fascinating talking to children about why they think Maths is important. I also ask if they know any jobs that you don’t need Maths for, and their replies always include footballers! I think I want to organise a big Maths event in a football stadium to smash this idea.

I also ask them if the think that some people are born with a better Maths brain, and even schools that have done work on Growth Mindsets, have children that put their thumbs up. We’re only born with 3 abilities – to breathe, sleep and go to the toilet! Everything else relies on practise and it’s practise that makes the difference. No, practise doesn’t make us perfect, but it does make a difference.


Challenging the Maths Myth

January 14, 2016

A new exciting chapter has started. I’m no longer a teacher! But, my passion for learning and particularly for Maths is as great as ever. I’ve joined the wonderful team at 3pLearning. I think my blog will speak volumes about how I have worked with Mathletics and how passionate I am about the impact it can have to children’s progress in Maths, but almost more importantly, to their attitude towards maths and learning. I feel so lucky to have this opportunity, it has come about as a result of needing more flexible work so that I could spend more time with my mother, who has dementia and Alzheimers. Live is too short, families are too special and the more passionate you are about teaching, the more all consuming it becomes… so with a new start, I remain as committed as ever to spreading the ‘LOVE’ of learning and Maths while also having more family time.

Today, I’m so lucky to be presenting alongside Dan Haesler at the Challenging the Maths Myth conference at Elland Road, Leeds. Click http://danhaesler.com/ to find out more.

After 15 years in the classroom, this feels SO far out of my comfort zone! So fingers crossed 🙂

Here are the presentations for the day. Please feel free to email me for more notes, resources, notebooks or with any questions.

Growth Mindsets across a school community  Link to PPT of session 1

Mathematical Mindsets Link to PPT of session 2

Mathletics and Developing a Growth Mindset pdf of document referred to

maths-at-home pdf of document referred to

Mathematical Mindsets pdf of session 1

Growth Mindsets across a school community pdf of session 2

 

 


Thank you for all your support. £1713 raised for Unicef.

October 30, 2015

Thank you to everyone for all the donations that were brought into school for Unicef to help support the refugees from Syria. A total of £1250 has been brought in to school and our Just Giving site has collected £463.25, giving a total to date of £1713.25.

The children all had a wonderful day and everyone enjoyed doing lots of  Maths based on the book 365 Penguins and worked hard to achieve their Mathletics Certificates. Across school, 143 children achieved their Mathletics Certificates in the week of World Maths Day.

A special Mathlete of the week trophy, a china penguin, decorated with the hive colours, was awarded to Sally in 2F. Well done to all the children who raised money for Unicef by gathering sponsors for their Mathletics totals during the week.

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World Maths Day – Tuesday October 13th

October 2, 2015

Together, we count and make a difference.

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Together the children in the School Council have helped to organise a fabulous day of events to help us ‘Be Great Learners’ and also ‘Be Good Citizens.’ Here is a brief outline of the day…

On Tuesday 14th October, everyone at Farsley Farfield Primary School will be taking part in a very special day. Together we will be using a book called 365 Penguins to inspire Maths activities in every class. Dress up as a penguin, or in black and white for the day!

While this story is about 365 penguins who leave their home because it is in danger and seek to find a new place to live together, we will also be thinking about the millions of children and their families who are leaving Syria to try and find a safe place to live. Together, we will be raising funds for Unicef to help the plight of Syrian refugees.

Here is a video produced by Unicef about the life of a Syrian child refugee.

Numbers help us to do so many things, but look at these numbers and think about what they tell you…

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As well as doing lots of penguin themed maths activities, all the children from Years 2-6 will be taking part in the Mathletics World Maths Day challenges. School will open early for Breakfast Mathletics and the after school Mathletics clubs, attended by over 100 children, will run on until teatime! On the World Maths Day challenges, children can earn Unicef points, which Mathletics and 3P learning will turn into money donated towards Unicef and their ‘School-in-a-box’ project.

Children will also have their own sponsorship forms and can choose to collect sponsors for their weeks score on Mathletics. This money will all go to Unicef to help them with their work supporting Syrian refugee families.

We have also set up a Just Giving page, so donations can be brought into school, or brought in by your penguins!

Screen Shot 2015-10-02 at 05.29.53 Click to link to FFPS JustGiving page.

At the end of the day, there will be a family event, watching ‘Happy Feet.’

A letter will be going home, along with a sponsorship form for children in Years 2-6. A copy will also be embedded here soon.

It’s going to be a brilliant day! We’ll be stretching our brains and challenging ourselves, while raising money for Unicef and Syrian refugees together.

Be great learner +Be good citizen=World maths day_1

 

 


Maths Family Meeting and working on place value

September 18, 2015

Many thanks to all the parents and families who attended the Maths Meeting on Tuesday evening. Despite the hall being rather full and noisy, it was good to read your evaluations and to know that the meeting had been useful.

The presentation from the evening can be found on the Maths at home page. In addition this page has more useful information, documents and links.

In class this week the children have been learning about place value. They know that each digit can represent a different number depending where it is in the number. For instance 2, in actually 20 in 24 but only worth 2, in 42. The children have done lots of practical work using their LEGO 10s and units and have also recorded their work, both pictorially and as calculations. In the video below you can see the children listening to a counter on the board and adding 1 each time it clicks. Watch what happens when they move from 9 to 10, 19 to 20 etc. See how hard everyone is concentrating too!

Here is a link to a video which the children have enjoyed in class. It shows clearly the role of each digit in a number. Click the image below.

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The children have also been allocated games on Mathletics to help them practise this weeks learning about place value.