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Maths - You do the maths

HMIE has published a guide to help schools and centres improve their mathematics provision as they continue to implement Curriculum for Excellence.

In its latest contribution to its Learning Together series, inspectors, who have worked with teachers across Scotland, provide guidance on good and effective practice in teaching maths, as well as a series of reflective questions for teachers to consider.

Learning Together: Mathematics builds on the findings of Improving Scottish Education 2005-2008. The report states: "An increasing number of teachers are transforming the curriculum by engaging actively with colleagues to evaluate continuously the outcomes of learning to improve learners' experiences and attainment.

"However, in too many schools, innovation has been insufficient and the outcomes for young people have not improved. Implementing Curriculum for Excellence should lead to improvements in attainment and achievement, raising the bar for all children and young people. To achieve this, a stronger focus on leadership for learning in mathematics is required at all levels."

Teachers need to draw on successful practice across the curriculum to invigorate their teaching of maths and provide learning environments that are rich in number and mathematical contexts, the inspectors say. They also want to see more exciting lessons which "engage and enthuse" learners, including well-planned interdisciplinary projects that extend mathematical skills and allow them to be applied in new contexts.

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