Thursday, 23 February 2017

Maths Inquiry 2017

Our school-wide inquiry focus is based around Mathematics.

In my class of five year olds, I have observed some children looking somewhat
confused and anxious when it comes to Maths. And yet people suggest that all children have a natural ‘bent’ towards mathematics, and that mathematical thinking comes naturally.  They say that all children like to sort, group and notice things and that this natural inquisitiveness should result in the learning of Maths being somewhat natural - without worry or concern, and requiring no coercion at all.
My initial investigation will be to see if this is true.  To answer that question I intend to have a variety of materials available to observe if students will indeed sort, group and notice.  
Once I’ve established that all children do (or do not) in fact have a natural Mathematics bent, I'll be able to investigate my real question around Maths, which is....

What place does 'play' have in encouraging mathematical thinking and a greater enjoyment and participation in the learning of Maths?

My hunch is that children who are adverse to Mathematics will become more engaged in the Maths we do as a class or group, as they begin to realise that Maths isn't that scary after all, and that it can actually be fun.

I look forward to the investigation and hope the results are very clear, as they will add another dimension to my teaching practise throughout this year (and years to come!).