Maths Year 9
Year 9 is the start of the GCSE programme of study and in Mathematics we continue to build on the work completed in Year 7 and 8. We change our focus from National Curriculum levels to GCSE Grades. Our aim is to provide a seamless transition from KS3 to KS4, and therefore we continue to work using a ‘spiral’ approach to the learning of the subject. This means that we break the areas of the curriculum down into chunks,and spread them out throughout the course of study with the aim of providing an increasing level of difficulty at the correct pace for the group, as well as developing the links between the different areas as we go. This continues throughout year 10 and 11.
- Number & Problem Solving
- Geometry & Measures
- Data Handling/Statistics
Top sets in year 9 and 10 will cover material from the GCSE Statistics course which they will take as an additional GCSE with the aim of completion at the end of Year 10.
During GCSE Mathematics students will be taught skills that enable them to function in other subjects and in everyday life. We continue to develop the numeracy skills taught in Years 7 and 8 but also develop the more abstract concepts required for GCSE. In particular, students will be taught how to present and analyse data accurately, they will be shown how to calculate percentages quickly and efficiently in their heads, and also how and when it is appropriate to use their calculators. They will study and learn how to convert between widely used measures including metric and imperial measures, and they will also learn how to problem solve, and how to present their findings in a meaningful way. They will also learn to use algebra and geometry to generalize, and to solve problems. The skills learnt during GCSE Mathematics prepare students for life after Year 11, and for those pupils that wish to continue studying the subject post-16 and take A level Mathematics, their GCSE studies will have prepared them for the rigours, as well as the beauty, of the subject.
Students are set according to their potential, based on prior results in tests and teacher assessments. We are combining both types of assessment to provide a rounded view of individual student understanding so that they are placed in the group that will best meet their Mathematical needs. They are also set challenging yet achievable targets based upon their KS2 results and in conjunction with their last exam result. Students will be in classes of no more than 30 students, and in lower ability groups, sometimes less than 15 per class. There will be opportunities throughout the year for pupils to move groups, according to their progress. Teachers will discuss movements at Mathematics Faculty meetings and decide if a move is in the best interest of the student.
Students will be set one piece of homework a week. Homework may be from the MyMaths website, which is marked automatically and immediately online, with a written piece of work at least once a fortnight. Both pieces will be designed to extend or consolidate class work, or will be revision work. Students should get written feedback from their teacher on their homework once a fortnight. In year 11, students will be given past papers to complete in the Spring term in preparation for their GCSE exam.
Assessment & Reporting
Students are assessed using a variety of methods with homework and class work being an important part of this. They will have a formal exam at the end of Year 9 and Year 10, to look at progress from previous years. There will also be interim reports throughout the year, as well as an annual full report according to the whole school timetable. Parents can contact class teachers at any time to get an update on their daughter’s progress.
How parents can help
- Ensuring that students come equipped to their lessons – students will need their own geometry set and a calculator for both class work and homework
- Checking that students are completing homework tasks to the best of their ability, and encouraging them to seek support in plenty of time if they are struggling
- Giving opportunities to work out how much change you should get in a shop, or to estimate shopping bills – it’s a good mental Maths workout!
- In Year 11, students are given a MathsWatch revision CD Rom – please encourage them to use it and ask them to show you how it works, its just like having a private tutor at home, but for free!
- All pupils have access to MyMaths – they can revise or study independently at any time to complement their studies. It has a GCSE Statistics section too.
- Most importantly, be positive about Mathematics at home – students that hear positive things about the subject at home are more likely to develop a positive attitude to it themselves!