See the NCETM website

After months of planning I eventually succeeded in creating an allotment in the grounds of St Joseph’s primary school. As Yr 6 teacher & Numeracy Coordinator I wanted to make concrete links for children between numeracy skills & the outdoor environment.
Previous to starting the project the children - Investigated the dimensions of the allotment boxes by measuring the depth, width & length.
- Calculated the perimeter and area of one box.
- Estimated how many of a particular vegetable they would be able to grow in one allotment box.
- Made calculations for 2 boxes, 4 boxes, 6 boxes etc by multiplying original calculation.
This involved: - Pupils investigating the size & type of various vegetables suitable for growing in our allotment
- Using strategies to calculate the amount of space each type of vegetable would take in the allotment
View the video ‘Allotment Project – Part 1’
View the video ‘Reflections after the lesson’ We were also - To investigate diets of the children in the class, looking particularly at their vegetable intake. Linking this to maths through recording and analysis of the data collected from home surveys. This project would also have many other cross-curricula links.
This involved:- - Using plans which they had produced previous to lesson showing patterns of vegetables which would produce the greatest yield pupils worked in groups setting out life-size templates onto the allotment
- Recorded patterns
- Predicted & calculated total cost of crop
View the video ‘Allotment Project – Part 2’ Does maximum crop yield have links to symmetrical planting? What do you think? After the activity pupils were able to state what the found easy/difficult & what they would do differently if they repeated the activity. View the video ‘Back in the Classroom’ In conclusion, I feel the project met my objectives for the children as definite but also meaningful links between maths & the outdoors were made for the children. They applied various mathematical skills in a ‘real life’ exercise. The experience of this project has made me think about the way I teach other maths topics, as I have seen such a positive affect on the children’s maths achievement. As a school we have built upon these experiences and intend to extend the idea of ‘doing maths outdoors’. Val Douglass |