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GCSE Mathematics

“Maths is the study of patterns abstracted from the world around us – so anything we learn in Maths has literally thousands of applications, in arts, sciences, finance, health and leisure” Professor R. Lawrence –MIT university.

What does this subject involve?

Mathematics GCSE is organised into four main areas of study – Using and Applying Mathematics, Number and Algebra, Shape, Space and Measure and Data handling. Maths is a compulsory GCSE subject for all state school pupils up to the age of 16/17 depending upon achievements.

What skills will I need to succeed in this subject?

  • Communication – expressing ideas precisely, concisely and unambiguously.
  • Application of number.
  • ICT – websites, graphical packages, spreadsheets and databases.
  • Working with others – leadership and independence.
  • Problem solving – strategic thinking.

Where could this subject take me in the future?

Mathematics is recognised as being important in everyday life, in many forms of employment; science, technology, medicine, the environment, development and in public decision making.

Who can I talk to for more information?

You are welcome to speak with any member of the mathematics department.

 

Key Stage 3

Students will be taught using a ‘mastery’ approach to learning, where pupils work on small identifiable steps and will only be allowed to progress to the next stage once they have shown they have mastered the current one.

The Halifax Academy is committed to raising the standards of numeracy for all of its students. In years 7 and 8 every pupil will be taught a dedicated lesson in numeracy every week. This will ensure they all have a secure understanding of basic arithmetic skills enabling pupils to use numeracy skills effectively in all areas of the curriculum. Pupils will be able to develop the skills necessary to cope confidently with the demands of secondary and further education, employment and adult life.

What type of homework will be set?

Homework will be set weekly using a mixture of worksheets and computer based questions, accessible on the internet. There is an after school homework club for those pupils who do not have access to the internet at home.

How will students be assessed in Mathematics?

Pupils will be assessed on a regular basis enabling the data produced for each pupil to correctly identify what stage they are at with their learning. This will allow teachers, parents and students to focus on areas for improvement.

How can parents support their child’s learning at home?

Pupils will be able to access web based interactive support at home. Parents should encourage their children to do additional work, using Mathswatchvle and Mymaths to enable them to become more independent.

Parents should encourage their children to practice their times tables on a regular basis and constantly test them.

 

Key Stage 4

Mathematics is a compulsory subject at KS4, and if a Grade equivalent to C is not achieved then students will have to continue to study  mathematics when they leave The Halifax Academy. All students will sit the exam at the end of year 11.

What will my child learn ?

Students will learn topics from the four mains areas of Mathematics: Number, Algebra, Geometry and Data Handling. 

What type of homework will be set?

Homework will be set weekly and will consist of a worksheet, a Mathswatch clip, a piece of research via the internet or any other task that will develop their knowledge and understanding of Mathematics. Students are also expected to use Mathswatch to review lessons and to develop their understanding.

How will students be assessed in Mathematics?

For many years GCSE Mathematics has been assessed with grades A* to G.  From 2018, the grades used will be 9 (highest) to 1 ( lowest). The new Mathematics GCSE will be assessed by three written papers at the end of Year 11.  Each paper is one and a half hours long and two of them are calculator papers. There is no coursework in GCSE Mathematics. The course will still be taught and examined in two tiers, Foundation and Higher.

Students will be continuously assessed by the class teacher using a range of strategies to ensure that their progress is maximised. Past exam papers are also used to create termly or end of year tests.

How can parents support their child’s learning at home?

Parents should check their child’s planner to ensure that homework is being recorded and completed. Parents should encourage their child to use websites like www.mymaths.co.uk and Mathswatch to support their learning and develop their understanding of key topics.

What can students move onto with Mathematics?

The new GCSE will provide a good platform to study AS or A level Mathematics and students will need at least a grade 5 or even 6 to be allowed to study Mathematics or Mathematical subjects (e.g. physics) at A level.

A good grade at GCSE Mathematics is widely valued by employers as it indicates an individual with strong problem solving abilities.