We have started February with a flurry of maths.
This last 2 weeks we ran 2 Messy Maths courses for early years and KS2 and a bespoke KS2 Messy Maths in partnership with Maesycwmmer Primary; the start of our excellence outdoors programme within their cluster. [udesign_icon_font name=”fa fa-lightbulb-o” color=”#dd9933″ size=”1.8em”] Take a look at our pictures and Pinterest for ideas.
We must say its been excellent to see so many teachers and teaching assistants from school across South Wales enthused to take maths outdoors and think creatively about how to find different ways to engage their children in mathematical learning.
This older piece by Sue Palmer on the Schoolifiction of Early Childhood which is been revisited in a Nursery World interview with Sue reminds us that as important as the learning of maths is; certainly at the early years age we must find ways to prioritise play, and child-centred learning. That is at the heart of our Messy Maths sessions…always.
Sue Palmer, author of parenting book Toxic Childhood, is campaigning for three- to seven-year-olds to be educated ‘free from the pressure of the formal school system and educational target-setting’.
We have learned that our KS2 practitioners were as keen to develop maths outdoors as our early years practitioners, and whilst the majority of them admitted to not doing “much outdoors”, when we started discussions on ideas for mathematical activities outdoors, we could see the fire was lit within them and the group discussion and creation of ideas just flowed.
It was teacher-led learning at its best.