With the new school year fast approaching, I have reorganised some pages and resources in the never ending quest to make things easy to find! This is an ongoing project.

A new series on Tools and Calculators includes for example GeoBoard Activities with GeoBoard resources.

There are many excellent PhET simulations from The University of Colorado Boulder. Look at Trig Tour for example. Note that this is HTML5 so available across platforms.

You will also see on the same page this calculator from Math Warehouse which shows the solution to any quadratic equation with full working using the formula.

Math Warehouse

The Problems and Activities page has had updates including the addition of Transum, a site I like a great deal as do many students. From Transum, we have the very wel known Maths Starter of the Day. Note that there is a complete index of starters including the topic of the starter. The Transum site is easy to navigate, there is a clear Topic Index for Teachers also, for students a Maths Map with numerous activities to support their learning. The example shown here is one of the Algebra Activities found on this page.

Transum – Algebra Activities

An essential part of every lesson is of course that we check that students are indeed learning, hence my reminder on Study Strategies on the Lesson Activities page.

From OCR (MEI) their Foundations of Advanced Mathematics level 2 qualification covers arithmetic, algebra, graphs, trigonometry and statistics. Assessment is by a two hour examination which consists of 40 multiple choice questions. As OCR suggest these questions could be used for diagnostic tests.

Choose Past Papers, mark schemes and reports. Papers and mark schemes from June 2007 are freely available (access to the most recent papers is available for schools only via OCR Interchange).

The UKMT Maths Challenge questions are excellent for students of all ages. This post includes a selection of links and resources to access the Maths Challenges.

For superb resources for the Oxford Admissions test multiple choice questions see these Underground Mathematics Review Questions where you will find not only the questions but suggestions and complete solutions.

At the start of my teaching career I really liked the first paper of the Mathematics A level from the University of London School Examinations Board – thirty multiple choice questions to complete in one hour, 15 minutes.

For questions 1 to 20, candidates had to select one answer from 5 and for questions 21-30 the instructions were as follows.

The pdf file here has the paper, followed by the exam board answers followed by notes from the 1986 version of me! These days I would illustrate with Desmos and/or WolframAlpha for example as well where appropriate.

Note the comment from Graham Cummings below, there are further papers available in the Edexcel’s Emporium:

The Emporium has some 17 multiple-choice question papers from the period 1988-1992 – by no means a complete set, but they range across the Mathematics, Further Mathematics, Pure Mathematics and Applied Mathematics syllabuses. You can find them in the “Pre-C2000” cabinet within GCE AS/A Level.

Signing up to Mathematics Emporium is highly recommended, note that it is a free website intended for the use of teachers of mathematics in secondary schools, regardless of what board you use. Register for an account and ensure you supply a correct centre e-mail address in your name for verification, your centre name and centre number.

I have been updating the Advanced Level series of pages (UK 16+) this will remain an important work in prgress as I teach the new Mathematics and Further Mathematics specifications during the next Academic years.

A new page is on challenging questions for this age group. The Oxford Maths Admissions Test multiple choice questions could make ideal starters (or anytime!) questions.

To really challenge your students, MAT, STEP and AEA questions provide an excellent source of questions. Dr Jamie Frost has created such a useful resource with his STEP, MAT and AEA questions all aligned to new A Level chapters. This document is 156 pages of categorised questions (brief answers are given). Also available is a pdf file of just the STEP questions.

For mark schemes see:

MAT (Maths Admissions Test), see right hand menu, question papers, followed by solutions as separate documents. For superb resources for these questions see these Underground Mathematics Review Questions where you will find not only the questions but suggestions and complete solutions.

STEP mark schemes (under STEP past papers). See also this post which includes details of a superb site for STEP questions as well as further resources; the site described has free access to fully worked solutions for STEP papers.

Ahead of Thursday’s (27th July, 8.30 – 9.00pm) #UKEdResChat on communicating educational research I thought I would check and update my Reading series of pages which includes some very useful educational research summaries.

The various pages on free books have also been checked and updated. With the new A Level Specifcations coming perhaps some of those old textbooks might come in handy and will take older readers on a trip down memory lane – anyone for Porter’s Further Elementary Analysis?!

From Harvard Graduate School of Education, see Communicating Research with readings, tips and strategies for clear expression. There are many good points here for communication generally not just in communicating research.

Select ‘Find by topic’ for a menu of Usable Topics’; try Teaching for example for a further menu including the chance to ‘Ask a researcher’. The series, Ask a Researcher, offers evidence-based guidance for the classroom in the areas of literacy, mathematics, and English language learning.

Easy to digest research on Mathematics education from Cambridge Mathematics, see their Espresso page where in their words, “Each month we bring you an Espresso – a small but intense draught of filtered research on mathematics education, expressly designed with teachers in mind. Each Espresso considers one particular issue in mathematics education, and how the latest good-quality research can provide helpful guidance or further reading.”

Some of these activities would be great for any lessons, not just at the end of term. The complete collection can always be found on the End of term activities page. For readers familar with this collection all links have been checked and there there have been several updates.

You might want something other than a video, though perhaps consider a Numberphile video or I could make an exception for the counting chimps, a video I was introduced to by Alex Bellos at the SSAT conference which he included in his session and shows the astonishing recall of a chimp – compare the human!

Try some UKMT team challenges, their crossnumber puzzles make a great end of term activity. The junior materials can be found hereand senior here.

From JustMaths a great end of year pub quiz. I do like the way this ends with a round on Matchstick puzzles, this will keep our students happily busy! Note the very useful recommendation for Matchstick Puzzles from Dawie van Heerden.

Get your students thinking with some resources from Underground Mathematics. Try Equation Sodukuor perhaps LCM Sudoku. Another possibility frm Underground Maths, try the Division Game.

Let your students get their phones out to play Factris, a new App published in July 2017 developed by Richard Lissaman, of MEI.

The Set Game which is a daily puzzle is set inThe New York Times. How many sets can you find? Click ‘How to play’ in the menu on the left for the rules.

On a similar theme try Make 24 a game where four numbers in the range of the natural numbers 1 to 9 are chosen randomly; these must be combined to obtain the result 24 – but you may only use the four basic arithmetical operations and brackets. This online version optionally shows solutions as well as presenting random problems. The program will also show solutions for any given set of four numbers.

Learn the syntax for WolframAlpha, perhaps a chance for students to explore WolframAlpha, using the various slideshows, note the questions on the worksheet. Note the last slideshow on a little fun with WolframAlpha!

Explore the Desmos Graphing Calculator(and note the further reference to Desmos below, use Desmos to create some art work!)

For a main activity a Tarsia puzzle provides an engaging activity. I intend to use one to see how many of the formulae needed for the part of the course which my Year 10 students (age 14-15) will be studying next year are already known.

Have you seen Wolfram fun facts? (You can view these on Twitter whether or not you have a Twitter account). Why not try modifying these queries? Note the different cookies you can try in the cookie query shown below. You could perhaps invent similar problems! How many pizzas would it take to fill the moon?OrJupiter?

If those WolframAlpha equations are a bit much for younger students they could try something simpler using the Desmos graphing calculator; look at Alec Schultz’s PacMan for example, you could just show your students how to restrict the domain for straight lines, maybe show them the equation of a circle and see what they can produce! See this post on Graph Art on Mathematics for Students.

To generate some more pretty curves why not try Spirograph?! Students could experiment with these online versions to see the various curves that can be generated.

These logic puzzles from John Prattshould keep students happily and usefully occupied. (I have added these to the Puzzles page on Mathematics Games.) Or we could try another Kakuro Puzzle, studentswere fascinated by these when introduced to the puzzles by a member of the class. At the end of the year we often ask students to do a presentation to their peers which works well.

If you create an account (all free) on Underground Mathematics you can easily save and organise your favourite resources.

Select User from the menu at the top right, then New User to create an account. Note that you also use the User menu to log in.

When you are logged in you can add any resource to your collection by selecting the star to the right of the title. And note this resource Pick a card, which I highly recommend, think about multiple representations for Quadratic Functions. This could be used with younger students too.

See also: Tutorials – Saving favourite resources – a video from Underground Maths
To see your resource collection, select ‘Your resource collection from the User menu.

You can also use subcollections to help organise your resources.

When you display your resource collection, note the options for each resource, the first of which is the ability to add the resource to a subcollection.

Note the choice to add to one of your existing subcollections or the option to create a new one.

Note that when you display your resource collection you can select a subcollection if you wish:

See for example Building Blocks resources I personally like; I created a subcollection and downloaded as a csv file. The ability to add notes is really useful too.

As mentioned in my previous post I am continuing to develop the series of A Level pages, for students aged 16-18 which will be a major ongoing project during this Summer and beyond. With a growing collection of resources, I have now split the Resources section into a series of pages and also added a tab to the top level of this blog for I hope easier navigation.

Having just returned from an inspirational MEI Conference I have much to reflect on and will be returning to many ideas from this in future. For now I must highlight MEI’s Problem Solving – Examples and Solutions which has just been published. As well as all the problems and solutions with very valuable suggestions and commentary, MEI have provided a guide to support teachers with the problem solving content of GCSE (14-16) and A Level (16-18).

Underground Mathematics, STEM Learning and Nrich have all mapped resources to subject content which makes it simpler to look for good resources for learning which means we can concentrate on teaching well and just how our students will learn. With MEI’s Interactive Scheme of work we have a suggested resource for each unit as well as ideas for using Technology and of course crucially very helpful commentary on learning and teaching. Jonny Griffiths RISPS collection has a very clear resource listing by topic. The list goes on. All the examination boards too have very clear and helpful documentation.

I have made several updates to every page in the A Level series of pages recently. The A Level Resources page has had many new additions. I am currently reorganising this as the collection has grown rather and I wish to add more resources and commentary, but all links will still work, the main page will simply become a resource index page for easier navigation. The series is very much a work in progress, I will continue to develop these as I teach both A Level Maths and Further Maths next year.

All three examination boards are developing really helpful resources to support teachers in delivering the new specifications. For A Level Mathematics, like GCSE we now have common content which means that it is well worth exploring resources from all the examination boards, something I have been doing for the new GCSE specification.

For some images to ilustrate these resources, see the Slides here. A summary slide has been included to aid navigation. You can view the slides on slideshare but as slide to slide links do not work on slideshare you may wish to download the PowerPoint file or the pdf version for easier navigation.

For Maths Conference 10 delegates, these are the slides used in my presentation on 24th June 2017. I have added a small number of slides which I hope aid navigation and help you find A Level resources on this blog. It was lovely to meet and talk to so many enthusiastic and dedicated teachers. Please do not hesitate to get in touch using the comment facility here or drop me an email.