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Calculator & maths questions

Maths: Show Me The Money!

23 January 2023

This is one of a multi-part series on changes that teachers would like to see in their Key Stage 4 curriculum! Over time, one short post for each subject will be released, and you can see all of the currently-released subjects over on the main page here.

So, what are the changes?

Out: Constructions and Loci
In: Financial Maths

Although Maths teachers were the happiest with the amount of content in their GCSE course, almost two-thirds of teachers still wanted to see a reduction in the content.

Removing Topics

What is it that Maths teachers would remove from their own curriculum though?

There was a considerable amount of consensus on this point – Constructions and Loci. 38% of Maths teachers said they would choose to remove this topic – a high percentage given that this was an open-ended question. For the non-Maths teachers among readers, Constructions and Loci is the act of drawing accurately with a ruler and pair of compasses.

On a personal note, I did see some calls for the axing of histograms with uneven class widths. As someone who spends their days making and interpreting graphs, I couldn’t agree more! Representing data using the areas of charts rather than heights is generally poor practice!

Adding Topics

Let’s look at the flip side of this question – what would Maths teachers add to their curriculum? These ideas could come in handy given the Prime Minister’s desire for all students to study maths until they are 18.

There was even more consensus for this question. In fact, teachers of other subjects also mentioned this a fair bit. The addition of elements of financial literacy was the most popular. There was a range of ideas within this theme, from understanding interest and terminology such as APR to skills such as budgeting and using spreadsheets.

Finance was by far the most popular suggestion. There were many others though, including a better understanding of some mathematical algorithms (through elements of decision maths) as well as bringing forward elements of calculus, like differentiation, forwards from A-Level.

What other changes would you make to the maths curriculum? Be sure to let us know via email or on Twitter @TeacherTapp!