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Key Stage 3 and 4 Mathematics Enrichment Days

Highgate runs a series of Mathematics Enrichment Days for pupils in Years 7 – 10 throughout the academic year. These days are a celebration of Mathematics and welcome pupils from our partner schools to collaborate with their peers at Highgate around a central love of the subject.

The innovative and interactive sessions are delivered by senior maths teachers at Highgate, and occasionally by academics and researchers. The full day activities improve pupils’ ability and confidence in maths, looking particularly at the applications of maths in the wider world. They encourage pupils to study the subject at the next level and to embrace their love of the subject.

Aims

To offer challenging maths to partner school pupils, particularly that outside of the school curriculum. To encourage pupils to pursue their study of maths to a higher level. To foster a sense of academic community in the teamwork between pupils from different schools.

Identified Need

It is recognised that there is a lack of STEM skills in children and young people. This is an issue as without STEM skills young people are much less able to pursue STEM academic choices and future employment opportunities that are vital to the economy, contributing 26% to the UK’s GDP (National Audit Office, 2018). This lack of STEM skills may arise from a lack of understanding of what real world science and mathematics involves, which may lower aspirations to study the subject further (British Science Association, 2017).

A general lack of exposure to the most challenging maths, such as that which does not lie in the school curriculum.

Critical Factors for Success

Willingness and availability of senior maths teachers and guests to lead the day and prepare the activities.

Administrative support to reach out to schools, secure the pupils that are attending, and organise resources and logistics for each day.

Willingness of partner school teachers to organise the days on their end, including in some cases, arranging transport for pupils and accompanying staff.

Beneficiaries

The partner school pupils who are exposed to different and challenging maths, and developing their team work and communication skills with pupils from other schools. They should leave with more enthusiasm for maths, and an intention to pursue it to a higher level of study.

Partner school teachers who sit in on the days may have an opportunity for CPD in mathematics education.

Highgate school pupils who are involved in the days, and work alongside pupils from very different schools. It is important that talented mathematicians are able to collaborate with their peers at this level, as they recognise they are part of a wider academic community and may be collaborating with future cohorts and colleagues.

Background

Mathematics Partnership Leads identified a desire to provide engaging teaching for pupils in local schools, for whom access to such resource may be rare. The School is proud of its unique brand of Mathematics teaching and we believe that pupils and staff from our partner schools will benefit from such teaching.

The scheme will have been running for five years in 2018/19.

Resources

It uses a room that can accommodate around 45 people in the school, and this has to be set up beforehand with the correct arrangement of tables and chairs. May need AV and IT for presentations.

Resources such as worksheets or booklets and needed, and someone to produce these.

Most days use two teaching staff for 4 hours, who run the academic aspect of the day. Sometimes guest mathematicians deliver the sessions, who also deliver the days for 4 hours.

Impact

Both qualitative and quantitative assessment of the days, as we receive feedback forms from each pupils at the end of each day in the series.

The anticipated outcomes are higher numbers of pupils attending the sessions going on to study maths at A Level, and beyond.

Pupil Involvement

Around 4-6 pupils form Highgate School attend each enrichment day. 4 pupils from each school attend the enrichment days. The pupils are aged 12-15, and we have separate days for Y8, Y9 and Y10 pupils.

Frequency

Enrichment Days are carried out in the following programme:

Autumn Term: 1 x Y8 enrichment day, 1 x Y9 competition, 1 x Y10 enrichment day

Spring Term: 1 x Y8 enrichment day, 1 x Y9 enrichment day, 1 x Y10 enrichment day

Summer Term: 1 x Y7&8 competition, 1 x Y9 enrichment day, 1 x Y10 enrichment day