12 Days of Christmas: Day 11 – Further Maths Polynomials Cardsort

Over the last couple of years I have particularly enjoyed teaching and writing interesting questions that concern Vieta’s Formulae. These relate the sums of products of roots of polynomials to the coefficients of the polynomial. I have always liked these, and have a very vivid memory of a Russian lecturer in one of my first […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 10 – Thirdsday

Sometimes being late with posting has it’s advantages! Thursday 3rd January was deemed a day to celebrate the number 1/3. It was named Thirdsday by James Propp (@JimPropp) who has written a fascinating and very detailed post about why he thinks 1/3 deserves more recognition and some interesting facts about 1/3 here. Since this post […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 9 – Peppa Pig Maths

Watching an episode of Peppa Pig this morning (Season 3, Episode 11) I was quite excited to see the quadratic formula on a board at Daddy Pig’s work. I found it interesting that they wrote it with the notation. I always introduce this notation for the discriminant but have never actually used it in the […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 8 – Reflections on A-Level Exams 2018

As it is New Year’s Day and I am beginning to think about getting students ready for the next round of exams in May/June it seems a sensible time to share the brief reflections I wrote on the 2018 Series of AS and A-Level mary’s exams. They focus on the AQA papers as that is […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 7 – A Core Maths Questions

How could you estimate: The total number of lightbulbs on the Nottingham Market Square Christmas Tree (shown below); The ratio of red to green bulbs on this christmas tree?  

12 Days of Christmas: Day 6 – Matrix Transformations

I have some catching up of posts to do so today I shall be sharing 3 fairly short posts. For the first I’m sharing a resource that I have used with both Year 12 Further Mathematicians and Year 11 Level 2 Further Mathematicians. Matrix representations of linear transformations appear in the syllabi for both of […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 5 – Christmas Market Simultaneous Equations

On Boxing Day, I went with my family to the Nottingham Winter Wonderland. While in the Alpine style bar I bought 2 mulled wines, a hot spiced apple juice, 1 fully loaded raclette fries (shown in the picture above) and one ham and mushroom pizza. The total cost of these was £27.50. In a slightly […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 4 – Integration by Substitution

Integration is a tricky topic to teach at A-Level (and beyond really) as so much comes down to experience. You only get good at Integration by doing lots of integrals and building up experience of  different techniques. Integration by substitution is very powerful but deciding on a substitution can be tricky and is often something […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 3 – Fortran 2018

Those of you who know me well know that I am quite a fan of programming and due to my background the languages I am most expert in are probably Fortran and Matlab. Excitingly a new standard – Fortran 2018 – was approved and published on the 28th November. If you so wish you can […]

12 Days of Christmas: Day 2 – Mary Somerville

I first heard of Mary Somerville When I visited my sister who was studying at Somerville College in Oxford – the formerly girls college named after Mary Somerville. Mary Somerville was a Scottish mathematician and communicator of science born on the 26th December 1780 – 238 years ago! Like most females of the time she […]