Monday, 16 March 2015

Y10 FMSP Maths Feast at the University of Surrey...AKA Maths Trip!!

Earlier this half term I was delighted to take 8 of our Y10 students to the University of Surrey for the FMSP's Year 10 'Maths Feast'; a day of challenging activities for students to complete whilst competing against other schools in the local area.
This was the first 'Maths Trip' that I have had the pleasure to organise and the day was fantastically well received by both my colleague and I and our students.
We chose 4 students from each of our Y10 'top sets' to take part in the day so we had 2 teams entered. They were 2 of 20 teams present on the day. When we arrived our teams were given table numbers to sit around and then the day started. My colleague and I were rotated round to the next table number and supervised these students from another school (this was to ensure there was no biased support given to students). As teachers, we were given an envelope of all the materials our designated team would need and were instructed to give these out throughout the day when each 'course' was 'served'. The rounds the students had to complete were varied and used a range of different skills and, of course, teamwork too. The best thing about the rounds was that we, as teachers, were allowed to take all of the resources back to our schools to use with our classes and have since been e-mailed a link to all the digital copies of the resources. I have since used the resources with my set 1 Y11s and they too enjoyed the tasks and the 'group work' lessons I put on for them based on the activities presented on the day.
I want to show all of these, but understanding that there are still events being held across the country I don't want to give any spoilers away or post the link to the resources that another school could use to 'prepare' themselves!
However, here's a few pics of one particular round that one of our teams were successful in (they each got a certificate for getting full marks in the round)...
(the inclusion of the photos wouldn't help anyone produce them as I couldn't put the blooming things together (one for @c0mplexnumber possibly)!)

*permission was granted by students/parents for their pictures to be taken during the event, but I blurred them out using 'Skitch' anyway. Anonymity and all that!*

Considering we were competing with a lot of private schools, who scored highly on all rounds, I was proud of how our teams competed and how they behaved on the day. I must also say that the school I was supervising were equally impressive and it was a pleasure supervising them on the day - I let their teacher know this too.

As this was the first trip I organised I was in 'super stressed' mode throughout the morning before we eventually got to the venue at the University of Surrey. The work needed to arrange the trip, get students on board, get parents to sign permission slips, arrange the use of the school's minibus, arrange for letters and all other admin 'stuff' to be sorted, sort cover, get a colleague to drive the minibus (I took and passed my minibus test earlier this year but can only drive our smaller bus, the larger one was the only one we could have for the day), get there on time and keep everyone safe etc was frankly exhausting, but having now done all of this I can say it was totally worth it...and it'll make the next time slightly easier as I'll know what's expected.

I would love to go on a similar trip provided by the FMSP and will look to do so in the future. I would also recommend this event to other schools thinking of taking a group of students out for an afternoon (the day ran from 2pm - 5pm). You can get more details on what the event entailed by going to the FMSP website here.

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