Problem Solving Hub

Launch 8th February 2016

Elmhurst Primary School, Newham

Matt Lewis, Advisory Teacher for Mathematics at Barking and Dagenham Local Authority, opened the meeting with a presentation. Matt invited delegates in 8 groups to discuss a range of values, beliefs and practices and to decide on those with which they agreed, disagreed or couldn’t decide either way.

What are the issues and opportunities for us to improve our children’s experience of learning mathematics? Prompted by this question delegates created an agenda of topics that were then discussed in small groups.

These are some of the comments made at the end of the meeting:
I’m very interested in the dynamic link between student confidence and resilience and teacher confidence
and resilience.
Confidence has come out as a main theme, as well as conflict over time – problem solving needs time.
The planning process is important, getting teams together and excited about rolling out this work.
It felt like I was not on my own; there is power in talking.
It is a privilege to work on Lesson Study. I have two tips: one – start with enthusiasts, two – being involved in projects
brings some freedom into the classroom.
I had no real expectations but am greatly encouraged by people with similar problems and the fact of our coming
together with support and a strategy.
There’s been a really positive energy this morning.

Matt Lewis: the culture which exists in classroom maths is similar across the age range, and is hard to shift – we were kids in an identifiably similar system. This Lesson Study, using problem solving, the enthusiasm that we have and the reflection here is not fluffy – it costs us time, but it’s real work. This is about supporting each other – I am going to rely on your support as we investigate these problems and investigate children’s learning of maths.