The Pareto principle in maths.
It left me with a lot to think about, and in September I will be taking on a new role as Head of Department at a new school. At this school they currently start their GCSE at the beginning of Year 9. At my previous two schools this has not been the case, don’t get me wrong the progressive build-up of mathematical skills will still be taught but do we explicitly say “you’re a GCSE student now” at the start of Year 9? Although this is a debate for later, and something I will look at during my role next year.
On the back of the 14 mathematical skills, which Kris listed in his blog as the 20% which underpins the other 80%, my fellow assistant subject leader and I produced a package to address this. It is a very straight forward test which addresses these vital skills and highlights to both teachers and pupils the areas which they need to focus their immediate attention on. After this test there are 8 homeworks which can be set that are linked to each area. You can find the test and homeworks here.
How I intend to use them:
Each year 9 student will take the test in their first week back in September. The teachers will then set the homework tasks accordingly. Some options available are:
- Set one a week for the first half term.
- Set multiple tasks each week if you think they are relatively quick/short for your students.
- Issue students with the ones they highlighter in red or yellow in their analysis.
I would value any feedback on this, and if your schools do anything similar? Thank you for taking your time to read this,