Mr Reddy Maths Blog

A hasty post on problem solving in maths: more English is the answer

Email just in from a teacher: “How you are tackling problem solving? Our learners and staff are finding it a challenge and I feel the key is to ensure it is right lower down in the school so that pupils have more skills to tackle problems when they are at …

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Teaching Your Class to Roll Numbers

I made this video for Rising Academy Network teachers to show them how I teach my classes to roll numbers.

First lesson back: Sense of possibility


In my first lesson with a new class I have two things I want to achieve: visioneering and routineering. This post is about visioneering, the act of sharing the Big Vision with your students and imbuing them with a Sense of Possibility. For clarity, the reason I think visioneering is …

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Modelling in maths

I’ve come to the conclusion that ace teachers are experts in classroom culture and that the most effective maths teachers are also excellent at modelling and questioning. With the hope of getting some feedback in the comments, here’s what I try to do consistently with modelling. I start with “empty …

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We can learn about maths teaching from Shanghai

My interest in Shanghai maths teaching is an intellectual matter not a political one. We should definitely be wanting to know more about their pedagogy given we are rarely in a position in our busy, chaotic, highly emotional school lives to engage with it. They’re the ones who have the …

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#OfstedMaths roundup


It was a pleasure to host the #OfstedMaths twitter chat the other night. Thank you to everyone who submitted a question beforehand, who contributed on the night and to @harfordsean and @janejoneshmi. If you come away with one thing it should be… Ofsted don’t have a preferred lesson style, marking …

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#OfstedMaths Twitterchat with Sean Harford and Jane Jones


This is the chance to ask two prominent Ofsted inspectors for answers to our questions on maths as it relates to inspections. Send your questions in advance and/or vote for questions that others are already posing, by clicking here: And then remember to follow the #OfstedMaths hashtag on Thursday …

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Ofsted Inspection Handbook (correct as of April 2015)

ofsted logo_df4cc3070947a655fae22d34f3662ced

Here’s a copy & paste of the maths section from the Ofsted Inspection Handbook: (School inspection handbook January 2015, No. 120101, page 19, para 55.) Inspecting the teaching of mathematics 55. When evaluating the effectiveness of a school’s work in mathematics through the analysis of performance data, observations in lessons …

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Featured comment: What is better for the child’s mathematical development in the long run?

Courtesy of Oratory Prep

This comment was left on the Design your own mastery curriculum article and deserves its own post. Centering on the what of early mathematical schooling, Helen talks about the emergency, reactive shortcuts that end up being used as a result of pupils not learning the basics by age 8. **************************************** …

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Ofsted and mastery of maths – direct from Jane Jones HMI

Developing depth through representations

If you work in a school where the senior management are reluctant to adopt a mastery curriculum and all the things that go with it (teaching style, intervention structure, assessment systems, etc.) then point them here! I had the opportunity to listen to Jane Jones HMI speak at the Maths …

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How best to work with additional adults in maths lessons

This post is dedicated to the wonderful City Year volunteers who tirelessly dedicated themselves to the pupils of King Solomon Academy, four days a week for a whole year. In response to tonight’s #mathscpdchat, I’ve written down my thoughts on establishing a positive working relationship that has benefits for you, …

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New dates for ‘Mastering Maths CPD for Heads of Department’

KSA Secondary

****************** SOLD OUT 4th/March/15 ************************** We’ll run another CPD day soon. Thanks to those who booked their places. We can’t wait to meet you! *************************************************************** Good news! I am organising another CPD event at King Solomon Academy for Maths Heads of Department but this time we’ll be running the day …

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Peer Tutoring: King Solomon Academy, tips and resources

Nice but codswallop.

Long before the Education Endowment Foundation’s Toolkit found that peer tutoring can add 6 more months of learning progress, I faced a problem that only peer tutoring could solve. All keystage 3 classes at King Solomon Academy are taught in mixed-ability form groups. Anyone teaching year 7 maths knows that …

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How to get a job at King Solomon Academy

Spoiler: I left my heart at KSA. Background The journey started about 7 years ago, when a group of ex-Teach First teachers including me and Max Haimendorf (now KSA Secondary’s Headteacher), began some coffee-shop thinking about the endemic issue of educational disadvantage. The solution, we concluded, was that Pupils With …

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#MathsCPDChat on times tables strategies

Pre-reading: Strategies for learning, remembering and understanding the times tables. Some additional thoughts for starting out teaching the times tables with year 2s onwards, prompted by a #MathsCPDChat These are the things I think are important for mastery of the tables (most of which, I suspect our primary colleagues are …

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MathsCounts logo winner!

4 Logo (modified)

Thanks all for ranking the 9 MathsCounts logos. Results! First choice (Score 2.9*) Comments: Clean and stands out. Clear, bold, good strapline. Colour ok, font clear and tidy, strapline better, ruler nice but somewhat stereotypical, overall reasonable. Great positive message! I ranked this #1, and I’m not sure why. It …

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#MathsCounts – vote for the logo

Maths-Counts-Logos 1 to 3

Thanks for voting on the name of the “I was never any good at maths” campaign. Voting is now closed and the top 5 were: #CountMeIn 54 votes × mean score 4 stars = 216 points #CanDoMaths 62 votes × mean score 3.5 stars = 217 points #EasyAsPi 69 votes …

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#NoGoodAtMaths – please vote for your favourite hashtag


Thanks to all those who responded to my call for a hashtag for the “I was never good at maths” campaign. More than 50 responses came in and the best are shared below. Now I need you to rate each one! If any of them have inspired you to come …

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“I was never any good at maths” – please help my desk study

2024 Good - 600

Spoiler alert: assistance required. For as long as I’ve been a maths teacher, and probably before, it’s seemed to me a travesty that people would leave school saying they weren’t good at maths. Well I’ve decided to do something about it on a bigger scale. At the moment it’s early …

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Ofsted does not expect…myth-busting doc from schools watchdog

So that I have this for the future, I’ve copied the text verbatim from Ofsted inspections – clarification for schools (October 2014, No. 140169). Ofsted inspections – clarification for schools The purpose of this document is to confirm facts about the requirements of Ofsted and to dispel myths that can …

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How we achieved dramatically good GCSE results in the poorest ward in London


Update: the 2014 GCSE results have put us in the top 10 in the country for 5 A*-C inc EM. Excerpt of an article written by Max Haimendorf, the headteacher with whom I and a small group of teachers founded KSA Secondary in 2009. Five years ago, parents in our …

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How we teach addition & subtraction of negative numbers


Notoriously difficult for pupils to understand, I think addition and subtraction of negatives is one of the things that one comes to understand after doing lots of practice. HOWEVER, that practice needs to be yielding correct answers from the off. It’s no good sending pupils off to do lots of …

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Good luck GCSE students – with a little help from my friends


Good luck Just wanting to wish pupils sitting their GCSE maths exams in the next couple of weeks, the best of luck. I remember what it feels like to be revising hard at this stage and the exam nerves on the day. It wasn’t that long since I last did …

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Design your own mastery curriculum in maths

Nonmastery curriculum

There seems to be a current surge from Heads of Maths and KS3 Maths Coordinators looking to adopt more of a mastery approach to teaching maths. This post is a quick run through of the journey the curriculum at King Solomon Academy has gone through and concludes with some advice …

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Lizz Truss on TESMaths chat


11:33 TES Team: Hello and welcome to TES Maths Week. We’ll be joined from 7pm by DfE minister Liz Truss, who’ll be answering your questions on maths in the new primary and secondary curriculum. You can ask questions live later on, or you can leave your questions or comments ahead …

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Chromebooks for Blended Learning – BETT 2014

Here are my slides from BETT 2014. The general ideas are that: There is a brick wall of technology that gets in the way of learning.Many laptops or desktop computers used in schools are unreliable, the workflow for sharing and collaboration on them is tedious and, in many other ways, …

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Inviting Heads of Maths to King Solomon Academy, Friday 21st March

Dear Head of Maths, You are invited to spend a day visiting King Solomon Academy on Friday 21st March, when you will have the chance to observe maths lessons and daily life, discuss the department-level things on your mind and participate in a very instructive training session on cognitive load …

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Plan 50 – where my maths GCSE class are going to get their next 50 marks

Plan 50

Plan 50 is the name I’m giving to a drive for each of my year 11 pupils to gain an additional 50 marks in their final mock exam in March compared to one they’ve just done in November. The list below is all the things I’m going to cover over …

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Analysis of the first 50 marks on GCSE higher maths papers


Towards the end of last school year (2012-13), the great members of the KSA maths department did an analysis of the topics coming up in the first 50 marks in GCSE maths higher papers. We looked through a stack of Edexcel and AQA papers from the last few years. Here …

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Mail merge after a maths mock


I handed out a mail-merged letter to my year 11 class today, based on their performance in a maths mock exam we held a week ago. This is how it read: Monday 2nd December, Dear R………., In the maths mock exam that you took a week ago, you achieved B3, …

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Inviting Heads of Maths to King Solomon Academy, 13th December

KSA Logo White

Dear Head of Maths, You are invited to visit King Solomon Academy on Friday 13th December. The agenda is as follows: 7.45am – Arrive 8am – Auction 8.40am – Briefing from Bruno 8.50am – Lesson observations – A mix of year 10 and 11 classes 10.15am – Training session from …

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Maths is Everywhere

“Mathematics, rightly viewed, possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty — a beauty cold and austere, without the gorgeous trappings of painting or music.” – Bertrand Russell Spoiler alert: This video was made by two amazing artists, Yann Pineill and Nicolas Lefaucheux, not by me.

Blended Learning Infographic



Maths National Curriculum 2013

The Department of Education has published the National Curriculum in England for Maths for KS1 & KS2 and for KS3. Keystages 1 and 2 National Curriculum in England for Maths Keystage 3 National Curriculum in England for Maths Related Posts Summary of proposed changes to GCSE Mathematics Latest on reforms …

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Latest on reforms to maths GCSE and A-levels

From Independent Chair’s report on the review of current GCE ‘specification content’ within subject criteria, published 6th September 2013. Do aims and objectives [of A level mathematics] need to change? If so, what change is needed? Only minor changes are required to strengthen the sense that mathematics is a subject …

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The multiple personalities of fractions


The following is an extract of the text I wrote for an ebook aimed as a guide for first year TeachFirst maths teachers. The excerpt covers what I see as the major difficulty of grasping fractions – their multiple personalities. You know where you are with integers. The number one …

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Sports Day Infographic

Winning infographic (running tracks closed)

Background The Head of PE (Nic Christo) asked me if we could do some cross-curricular work in maths lessons that linked to the upcoming sports day. To keep the buzz of sports day going, Nic wanted English, Maths and Science to do some sort of project. So year 8 scientists …

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#TMBlended Evaluation Infographic


#TMBlended Evaluation Featured questions Featured suggestions Featured highlights | Create infographics

#TMBlended Videos


Menu Colin Hegarty – Flipped Learning Bruno Reddy – How to make sure they watch the video Darren Murphy – Google Apps and Moodle Colin Hegarty – Flipped learning Resources Colin’s slides Mr Hegarty YouTube channel Bruno Reddy – How to make sure they watch the video Resources Bruno’s slides …

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Summary of proposed changes to GCSE Mathematics

GCSE Mathematics_final - gcse mathematics_final.pdf

Changes to Format/Administration Grades 8 to 1 (not corresponding to A* to G – aim is to even out the distribution more) Still tiered; still “overlapping” tiers but degree of overlap may well change Assessment by terminal examination only;  minimum assessment time 3.5 hours No “SPAG” marks in Mathematics Still …

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