The maths curriculum at Wetherby is traditional and academically rigorous; however, we aim to use technology effectively to make teaching and learning more dynamic. We also believe that boys can improve their problem solving skills by being challenged by questions and activities that go beyond standard textbook exercises. To that end, we ensure that all boys understand and agree to the following pledge.
As a Wetherby mathematician:
- I am a problem solver and learn from attempting tough challenges.
- I am prepared to take risks: it is better to get a wrong answer than to not try.
- I respond positively to teacher feedback and learn from mistakes.
- I practise techniques in order to aid memory and to increase speed and accuracy.
- Year 7 and 8 will cover all topics in the new, more extensive, KS3 National Curriculum, which will give the boys an excellent foundation for GCSE.
- Year 9 boys start an IGCSE course and the curriculum has been designed to capture all of the key areas in mathematics, across Number and Algebra, Shape, Space and Measures and Handling Data within the year. There will be opportunities for the top set to sit an extra GCSE in Additional Maths in Year 11.
- At A Level, Mathematics is a good option for boys regardless of their desired university course. For those with a talent for the subject, Further Mathematics is rewarding and useful for those wanting to read Science, Engineering or Economics at university.
In all years, we also aim to enrich and enhance the prescribed curriculum in order to install a sense of awe and wonder of maths in all boys through investigations, project work and cross-curricular activities. Extension material is inherent in our planning and we produce weekly ‘Challenge Questions’. We carefully select IT resources to assist with the teaching and learning of mathematics where appropriate; for instance, when learning angle properties of polygons, boys use code to program a computer to draw shapes. In the lower years, most lessons take place without the use of the calculator in order to develop numeracy skills; however, scientific calculators allow a greater range of problem solving and we expect boys on a GCSE course to own a Casio fx-991 ES PLUS.
extra curricular and extension
Boys will be entered in UK Mathematics Trust (UKMT) and Intermediate and Senior Challenges at the appropriate age. We also select boys to represent the school in Team Challenges. Some of our Year 9 boys have attended Mathematics Masterclasses at the Royal Instiution.
Challenge Questions from UMKT and other sources form part of weekly prep and are used in class to supplement the study of a particular topic and to ensure that topics in maths are not studied in isolation. As an example, whilst studying Pythagoras’ Theorem, Year 9 boys may be asked the following question.
The diagrams below show squares placed inside two identical semicircles. In the lower diagram the two squares are identical. What is the ratio of the areas of the two shaded regions?