Tes Maths: Supporting students in class

Craig Barton
31st October 2017

Top lessons and activity ideas to help you to support students and maintain momentum after half term

Half term may have disappeared in the blink of an eye, but there’s no excuse not to hit the ground running on your return to the classroom. Continue to keep students energised after the break with some carefully planned teacher-led exercises, which will introduce plenty of new skills and concepts. From modelled worked examples to step-by-step guidance on activities, we’ve selected some of the very best supported and scaffolded tasks that Tes has to offer.

Thanks – as ever – go to the generous and talented members of the Tes Maths community, who have shared their lesson ideas with us.

Craig Barton, Tes Maths Adviser

Lesson ideas

Whether you’re starting a brand-new topic or revisiting an old favourite, these lessons are an excellent starting point for providing student support. Containing crystal-clear explanations and detailed worked examples, what better way to stimulate pupils than with these visually appealing activities?

Maths - Percentages - #iInspire (*Updated 25 April 2017)

Presentation and Worksheet on Percentages

- Convert between fractions, decimals and percentages
- Calculate % of a quantity
- Express one quantity as a % of another
- Increase/decrease a quantity by a %
- Reverse %
- Compound %
- Repeated % Change
By Liam David Evans

GCSE Quadratic Inequalities

Covers all aspects of the GCSE specification on quadratic inequalities.
By DrFrostMaths

Algebraic Fractions

Powerpoint covering the full range of Algebraic Fractions topics. From simplifying to multiplying and dividing, to adding and subtracting, to finally solving equations involving them. Includes the Tarsia referenced in the PPT, though I can't claim the credit for making this!
By Daniel Burke

Step-by-step activities

Simultaneous equations, algebraic fractions and many other mathematical concepts involve complex, multi-step processes. From worksheets to presentations, help students get to grips with these topics by breaking them down into bite-sized chunks.

KS3/KS4 Maths: Introduction to simultaneous equations lesson

Full lesson introducing the concept of simultaneous equations, highlighting key vocabulary, looking at what criteria need to be met in order to be able to solve simultaneous equations, and illustrating that they can be solved in a number of different ways.

The puzzles worksheet allows pupils to self-discover how to approach simultaneous equations with variables represented pictorially, initially by trial and error.

Solving algebraic equations graphically is briefly outlined, with the main focus of the lesson being to start applying the substitution method. Three examples given to be gone through on the board and then a codebreaker worksheet.

The plenary isn't necessarily designed to be answered, more to prompt pupils to start thinking -- and verbalising -- that they could set up a system of equations in order to solve the problem.

Please do rate and review this resource -- I appreciate feedback!
By omarsmum

Lesson and resource - Area of Sectors.

Created for an interview, the numbers on the connect 4 activity link to the new GCSE grading system. The aim is for the pupils to connect 4 boxes and to try a selction of questions at different levels.

The activity has been created using some old exam questions and some I have made up myself.

I have the answers - I will scan them in...
By Cpip85

GCSE Introducing Pythagoras' Theorem Lesson

This lesson is designed for pupils who have not seen or applied this theorem before. It was planned to teach Year 9 set 1, but can be used at GCSE.
By fergcampbell

Averages from Grouped Frequency Tables

A simple powerpoint that starts with an example of finding the averages from a frequency table, and goes on to find averages from a grouped frequency table. The word file is a set of notes to stick in for simple tables (meant as revision). Let me know what you think.
By Interactive Maths

Challenging investigations

Even the most confident student may find the idea of completing complex problems and investigations on their own a daunting prospect. So, why not allow pupils to develop both the skills and the resilience needed to cope with such situations with the help of these stimulating exercises?

Maths Investigations

Based on the Science tasks produced in East Sussex, these investigation starter sheets give an introduction to a topic for investigation, with levelled guidance for progressing the investigation and to allow self- and peer-assessment. Targetted at Y7, these may be suitable for several year groups in KS2/3 Please note that the levelling guide is a first draft and may change. There are currently six investigations: one based on positive & negative numbers, one on sequences, one on area/perimeter, one on polyominoes, one on handling data, and the sixth on probability. Any suggestions warmly welcomed at tafkam.tes@googlemail.com

By tafkam

Maths Investigations

A list of over 20 Maths problems, puzzles, games and investigations that I collated during my MaST (Maths Specialist Teacher) course last year. Whilst easy to use as they are in KS2, most could easily be adapted for KS1 too. Please use them as a starting point to extend and develop where you, or your class, want to take them: 'What would happen if ...'
By andrewchadwick

KS3/GCSE Maths Investigations

A set of 6 investigations (complete with teacher notes and worksheets) where students are set a challenging problem and work to find the solution. Each investigation should take up a whole lesson.

The first investigation focuses mainly on probability and gets pupils to find the total possible number of half-time scores if given the full-time score, eventually finding a formula connecting the two. The second connects geometry and algebra, getting pupils to generate a formula which links the total possible number of triangles with a given perimeter. The third investigation gets pupils to discover the origins of square numbers whilst the fourth gets students to calculate the optimum rate (using compound interest) at which interest should be added to money in order to achieve maximum interest. The bundle concludes with a pair of investigations on triangular numbers, the first helping pupils to appreciate the properties of the sequence and the second which gets pupils to discover the derivation for the nth term of the triangular number sequence.
By sam curran

Venn Diagrams 3 - Straight Line Graphs

This is a rich Venn Diagram activity on the equations of Straight Line Graphs.

To access all the Venn Diagram activities in this collection, as well as teaching notes, please visit: http://www.mrbartonmaths.com/venn.htm

Here is why I love Venn Diagram activities so much:

1) Students can always make a start. If they can think of a number/expression/object or whatever it might be, it has to go in one of the regions on the diagram, so they are up and running
2) The more regions student find, the more challenging the task gets, which adds a nice element of differentiation
3) They are incredibly versatile, and can be used for almost all maths topics for all ages and abilities
4) They are easy to tweak by simply changing one of the circle labels if you find they are too difficult/easy
5) Students can create their own as an extension task

I hope you and your students enjoy them.
By MrBartonMaths

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