New grapevine

17th November 2006 at 00:00
In maths, a trouble shared is often a problem solved. It's ridiculously obvious.

However, the real problem we have is getting children to open up in public and voice their ideas.

To do that effectively we need challenging activities that invite interaction and kick-start conversation.

One strategy worth giving a go is rumours - for example: I heard a rumour that another name for a square is a rhombus.

I heard a rumour that a parallelogram has four right angles.

I heard a rumour that to multiply a number by 10 you just add a zero.

I heard a rumour that you should never choose 1,2,3,4,5,6 for your lottery numbers.

There are lots you could create yourself. The idea is that we draw children into saying what they think and get them to explain their reasoning in groups. If you want to promote conversations, plant a few rumours into your maths lessons and let children's talk take over John Dabell is a numeracy consultant and teacher trainer

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