Mathematics in the Junior School
During an academic year that has required us all - girls, parents and teachers - to show great flexibility and innovation, often at very short notice, in response to new ways of learning and living, the dependability of primary Maths has perhaps been more consciously appreciated by us all.
Maths lessons have continued uninterrupted, whether in school or online, and numbers have continued to follow the same, familiar rules. But our embracing of technology has meant that the same content has been taught in new and often innovative ways, making the best use of available technology. Whiteboards are virtual ones; so too are collaborative spaces, with girls and teachers working alongside each other in real-time. Angles are animated and 3D shapes can be constructed, rotated and deconstructed with the click of a mouse button or touch on a screen.
Maths may be a constant but how it is now taught at the Junior School has changed forever.
For every girl studying maths at the Junior School, the subject will often demand that they show perseverance and resilience, be this learning to tell the time, grappling with fractions, or their first foray into algebra. But this academic year and last have demanded even greater levels of both from the girls. Girls have had to contend with intermittent WiFi, printers jamming and running out of ink, and siblings, even pets, walking in on their Maths lessons.
They have shown levels of perseverance and resilience above and beyond what is normally required and have still broadened and deepened their mathematical knowledge and understanding.
This past academic year has really made me appreciate school. It can be too easy to forget what a gift it is to attend or work in a school, especially a school like St Mary’s Junior School. Whatever your favourite subject (Maths, clearly), school is so much more than just the curriculum: it is a community, and sometimes it takes something big to truly remind us of this. Online teaching and learning were tough but we, the St Mary’s community, each and every one of us, helped each other get through these challenging times, and more than that, to continue to grow and develop as learners, teachers and as people. We can all look back on this year and be proud of how we supported each other.
This past academic year has really made me appreciate school. It can be too easy to forget what a gift it is to attend or work in a school, especially a school like St Mary’s Junior School.
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