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St John the Baptist’s College, Portadown

Mathematics

 
 
 
 
 
 

Mathematics is a core subject that opens doors and provides opportunities: doors to employment and further/higher educational courses and opportunities to learn about the relevance of mathematics to everyday life.

Mathematics is all around us. It exists in the proportions of artistic works, in the scores of our favourite songs and in the physical structures we live and work in daily. It is also the bedrock of many other subjects including the Sciences, Economics and Engineering and is extremely relevant to subjects like Psychology and Design.

The study of mathematics can develop a host of skills that are essential to students continuing in their studies as well as those currently in or entering the workplace. These include problem-solving, logic and reasoning, and attention to detail. Mathematics links with several other curricular areas such as TD, Science, HE, PE and Business Studies. It can also lead to careers in finance, business, IT and teaching, among others.

Staff

  • Mrs D Kerr  (Head of Department)
  • Ms F McCormack (Numeracy Co-ordinator)
  • Mrs A Hughes
  • Mrs J Scullion
  • Ms M Hughes
  • Ms M Duffy
  • Mr R Smith

Aims of Department

The aims of teaching Mathematics are:

  • to make Mathematics a pleasant and enjoyable pursuit;
  • to encourage the effectiveness of Mathematics as a tool in a wide range of activities within both school and adult life;
  • to make pupils aware of the importance of mathematics in the analysis and communication of information and ideas;
  • to develop an appreciation of the relationships within Mathematics;
  • to facilitate the development of an awareness of the fascination of Mathematics;
  • to show Mathematics as a process, as a creative activity in which pupils can be involved;
  • to encourage pupils to work in a systematic way;
  • to encourage pupils to work both independently and cooperatively in appropriate situations;
  • to enable pupils to gain confidence and to tackle mathematical tasks without anxiety and apprehension.
 

KS3 Overview

“Number rules the Universe.”

Pythagoras  560-480 B.C.

 

RESULTS 

The Mathematics Department is one of the most successful departments in school.  Our statistics for Key Stage 3 2020 are detailed below:

100% Level 5 to Level 8 in Key Stage 3 Using Mathematics.

Our Key Stage 4 data and continuous assessments show all students will achieve at least their GL predicted grade with a large majority achieving at least one grade higher.

Key Stage 3 Mathematics

In Years 8, 9 and 10 all pupils follow a course which covers the requirements of the New Revised Curriculum.  We also provide opportunities for students to work through higher level thinking and problem solving beyond Level 8 in class.

In the Mathematics departments students are usually taught by the same teacher for the three years. This allows for consistency in the delivery of the curriculum, and also fosters good classroom relationship between teacher and pupil. Mathematics classes in the top band are streamed by ability.  Class placement is aided by the evidence provided from diagnostic testing at the end of the previous academic year.  All other classes are taught in their registration groups. All students cover the four statutory attainment targets:

  • Number
  • Algebra
  • Shape, Space and Measure
  • Data Handling

Year 10 Mathematics classes are scheduled at the same time.  This affords the department the opportunity to move students across groups while maintaining their pastoral form class structure.

Here are further sites at each specific key stage that you might also find useful.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/schools/ks3bitesize/maths/

http://lgfl.skoool.co.uk/keystage3.aspx?id=65

http://www.amathsdictionaryforkids.com/

http://www.brain-cells.co.uk/bcells7/Education/KS3MATHS.htm

http://www.mymaths.co.uk/

http://livemaths.co.uk/

http://emaths.co.uk/learn.htm

http://www.maths-revision.moonfruit.com

KS4 Overview

High Achievers

Gifted and Talented students at Key Stage 3

Students that are naturally gifted in Mathematics will be given the opportunity to further their knowledge and understanding by attending a weekly Mathematics enhancement classes in Years 8, 9 and 10 with the view to sitting their G.C.S.E. at the end of Year 10.

These students will also represent the school in the UK Maths Challenge and the UK Maths Team Challenge in February and April respectively.

 Students with a passion for Chess and Draughts can also join the Games club in Mrs Hughes room every Tuesday at lunchtime.

Gifted and Talented students in Primary 7

The enhancement programme will also be available to our local feeder Primary schools.  Primary 7 students will be given the opportunity to attend our ‘High Achievers’ class for both Mathematics and English on a Wednesday morning with Mrs Hughes and Ms Magee.

GCSE Mathematics

High Achievers

Gifted and Talented students at Key Stage 3

Students that are naturally gifted in Mathematics will be given the opportunity to further their knowledge and understanding by attending a weekly Mathematics enhancement classes in Years 8, 9 and 10 with the view to sitting their G.C.S.E. at the end of Year 10.

These students will also represent the school in the UK Maths Challenge and the UK Maths Team Challenge in February and April respectively.

 Students with a passion for Chess and Draughts can also join the Games club in Mrs Hughes room every Tuesday at lunchtime.

Gifted and Talented students in Primary 7

The enhancement programme will also be available to our local feeder Primary schools.  Primary 7 students will be given the opportunity to attend our ‘High Achievers’ class for both Mathematics and English on a Wednesday morning with Mrs Hughes and Ms Magee

GCSE MAThs

Pupils in Years 11 and 12 are assigned to sets according to their performance and progress. Pupils have Mathematics lessons four times per week while in school. The Mathematics department regularly consolidate and extend pupils learning away from the classroom via a range of home learning tasks.

KS4 Curriculum (Years 10/11/12)

GCSE Mathematics

Exam Board: CCEA

This is a two-year unitised course, with a new specification for first teaching from September 2017. It is assessed by exam only, there is no coursework or controlled assessment.

Two Modules:

 Year 11 – 45% of GCSE – one calculator paper (M2 – M4)

 Year 12 – 55% of GCSE – two papers – one non-calculator and one calculator

(M6-M8)

 Both examinations take place on the same day.

GCSE FOUNDATION TIER

Content

Assessment

Weighting

Availability

Unit M1

External written examination withcalculator

45%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2018)

Unit M5 Completion Test

1 hr 45 minutes 2 external written examinations:

Paper 1 without calculator 1 hour 10 min

Paper 2 with calculator 1 hour 10 mins

55%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2019)

Grades D, E, F, G

Level 1 in Function Maths

Content

Assessment

Weighting

Availability

Unit M2

External written examination withcalculator

1 hr 45 mins

45%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2018)

Unit M6 Completion Test

2 external written examinations:

Paper 1 withoutcalculator 1 hour 10 mins

Paper 2 withcalculator 1 hour 10 mins

55%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2019)

Grades C*, C, D, E, F

Level 1/2 in Functional Maths

GCSE HIGHER TIER

Content

Assessment

Weighting

Availability

Unit M3

External written examination withcalculator

45%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2018)

Unit M7 Completion Test

2 hours 2 external written examinations:

Paper 1 withoutcalculator 1 hour 15 minutes

Paper 2 withcalculator 1 hour 15 minutes

55%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2018)

Content

Assessment

Weighting

Availability

Unit M4

External written examination withcalculator

2 hours

45%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2018)

Unit M8 Completion Test

2 external written examinations:

Paper 1 withoutcalculator 1 hour 15 minutes

Paper 2 withcalculator 1 hour 15 minutes

55%

January and Summer (beginning Summer 2019)

Grades A*, A, B, C*, C

GCSE Further Mathematics

Exam Board: CCEA

This is a new specification for first teaching from September 2017. It is a two-year unitised course assessed by exam only, there is no coursework or controlled assessment.

Three Modules:

 Year 11 –         Unit 1 Pure Mathematics worth 50% of GCSE

 Year 12 –         Unit 2 Mechanics worth 25% of GCSE

                        Unit 3 Statistics worth 25% of GCSE

KS4 useful links to help students for revision:

https://corbettmaths.com/2019/04/03/ccea-gcse-summer-2019/

https://ccea.org.uk/key-stage-4/gcse/subjects/gcse-mathematics-2017/past-papers-mark-schemes

VIRTUAL PLATFORMS USED IN DAILY LESSONS

Given the necessary shift to virtual and blended learning during COVID pandemic, staff within the Mathematics department use Google Classroom / Google Meet / Google Teams / Seesaw and Explain Everything as tools to aid teaching. This has been an invaluable resource as students can access information and videos at any stage of the day.

Aims, Goals & Targets

As an ever growing and improving department we have already achieved a number of successful milestones for this year.

With the introduction of GCSEs, we are running after school revision classes for Higher, Intermediate and Foundation tier. We provide a number of High Achievers classes for both our own KS3 pupils and the primary 7 pupils from the local primary schools. Within the Maths department, we cater for the needs of all pupils by providing both learning mentors and numeracy withdrawals. This enables pupils to benefit from one-to-one support where they can focus on their own individual areas for improvement. 

In order to encourage Maths and promote confidence within the classroom, we run a Numeracy Fun Club at lunch time where pupils can participate in various Maths games and activities.  We also hold a ‘Fun Friday’ session for all Year 8 students every two weeks. This year, we participated in Maths Week Ireland which was thoroughly enjoyed by all pupils. Pupils are eagerly awaiting the Junior Maths Challenge which will be taking place in February.

This year, due to the current pandemic, all teachers within the department have been live streaming classes as well as providing online teaching and revision resources on Google Classroom and Google Meet. 

In order to continually grow and improve as a department, we strive to enable all pupils to engage in learning and teaching and therefore achieve success in Maths. Our aim for KS3 is to promote higher order thinking through problem solving and group work activities. We will continue to run a Numeracy Fun Day filled with engaging activities that will ensure every pupil has the opportunity to participate at their own level. At KS4, we aim to ensure every pupil meets or succeeds their personal target grade. Next year, with the help of our high achiever classes, we hope to deliver the Further Maths GCSE to our current Year 11 cohort.

News

20th May 2022
Year 10 STEM pupils learning about the aerodynamics of a plane
 
 
 
4th May 2022
Year 8 mathematicians enjoyed designing their own data collection sheets today to...
 
 
 
4th Apr 2022
In Miss Hughes’ maths class, year 9 students really enjoyed their weekly ‘boys...
 
 
 
16th Mar 2022
Year 8 Maths students enjoyed green day and continued to celebrate #seachtainnagaeilge...
 
 
 
14th Mar 2022
Did you know that 3.14 miles = 5km? We're challenging all of our friends in the...
 
 
 
1st Feb 2022
Year 8 Maths students explored rotational symmetry using tracing paper today....some...
 
 
 
19th Jan 2022
9E matching some averages in their maths lessons - great work 9E
 
 
 
30th Nov 2021
Year 12 Further Maths class work on past paper questions  in preparation for...