"If people do not believe that mathematics is simple, it is only because they do not realise how complicated life is." - John Louis von Neumann, 20th Century Mathematician(b. 28 Dec 1903 Budapest, Hungary – d. 8 Feb 1957, Washington, USA)
The Mathematics Department aims to provide all MGSG’s students with a high degree of confidence and competence in the subject, by understanding the curriculum, making connections that enable progress in other subject areas and developing skills that will be useful in life beyond the school. The Department has supported students to achieve some very pleasing external examination results in recent years.
Students in Years 7 and 8 are taught using the Collins National Mathematics Frameworking 3rd Edition textbooks. All students in Year 7 have seven 1 hour lessons per fortnight which reduces to six 1 hour lessons in Year 8. In Year 7, students are taught in their tutor groups. Assessments at the end of every topic are undertaken throughout the two years. The end-of-Year 7 examinations largely determine setting for Year 8. During this time, students are taught work up to GCSE Grade 6 but including opportunities for mental arithmetic and functional mathematics practice. At every fixed assessment point, the results from the assessments completed since the last assessment point are collated into one overall grade so that students’ progress can be regularly monitored by parents. The Department also uses MyMaths and various PowerPoint presentations to help with students’ learning.
The topics covered across the two years are categorised as:
- Decimals, Fractions and Percentages
- Shape, including area and volume, geometry
- Calculating with Numbers
- Co-ordinates, Graphs and Mapping
- Handling Data
- Units of measure, ratios and proportion
- Ratios and Proportion
- Simultaneous Equations
- Plotting Graphs
For Years 9-11, students are again set based largely on their end-of-Year 8 examinations. Two sets each year are classed as Dual Mathematics with the intention that girls will complete the Year 9 and GCSE Schemes of Work at a faster pace that permits the completion of the AQA Level 2 Further Mathematics course as well. These students will then sit both their compulsory Edexcel GCSE Mathematics and this additional course in May/June of Year 11. The rest of the year group, in another six sets, complete just the Edexcel GCSE Mathematics course. Students are taught using the Collins Edexcel GCSE Maths Higher Student Book. All students in Year 9 have seven 1 hour lessons per fortnight but students in Years 10 and 11 have six 1 hour lessons per fortnight.
The topics covered across the three years are categorised as:
- Trigonometry & Pythagoras
- Leftover Mensuration Topics
- Similar Triangles & Rates of Change
- Measures and accuracy
- Factors, powers and roots
- Equations and inequalities
- Circles and constructions
- Fractions, decimals and percentages
- Ratio and proportion
- Units and proportionality
- Handling data
- Working in 2D and 3D
- Angles and polygons
- Formulae and functions
- Combined events
AS Mathematics is a popular option for students. Those who wish to study the subject have to sit a Fundamentals Test, largely based upon their algebraic knowledge from GCSE Mathematics, at the beginning of Year 12, for which they are expected to demonstrate a sufficient understanding of key topics. All students in Year 12 study Edexcel’s compulsory Core, Statistics and Mechanics elements. Students regularly complete assessments within all modules and are expected to show that they have reached a sufficient standard.
In Year 13, the majority of students continue with their A Level studies in the subject, studying Edexcel’s compulsory Core, Statistics and Mechanics.
Further Mathematics is also offered as an option for the most able Mathematicians. Students who wish to study both Mathematics and Further Mathematics complete the entire A Level Mathematics course in Year 12 before embarking upon either AS or the entire A Level Further Mathematics course in Year 13.