This school year I’ve been blogging example activities, questions and images that I’ve used to extend mathematical reasoning with my class. Here goes for Spring 1:

Sorting shapes using a branching database. Children create questions to sort, position the shapes then cover their questions. Other groups have to work out what their sorting questions are. This structure could easily be adapted and used with numbers.
Branch d

Similarly, classifying shapes in a Venn diagram, with children deducing the headings:
Venn shapes
‘All sides the same length’ and ‘At least 2 acute angles’.

Here’s a reasoning question based on finding missing angles in an isosceles triangle, with two possible solutions represented visually:
Isosc tri q

isosc visual rep

The following exhibits were used to allow children to unpick and explain the most common misconceptions when measuring angles:
Angle A Angle B Angle C

And finally I’ve posted various images of dot patterns that I’ve found for subitizing games. Children are asked to recognise without counting how many dots are in the given pattern (selected age-appropriately). The different ways in which the children visualised and broke down the number of dots in each image can be explored.

dots 1

10-frame image


Since January I’ve also shut myself away and, as I’ve promised myself for ages,  finally spent time writing the Y4/Y5 follow-up to First Class Maths. I am 3 tasks (and a stack of trials/edits) away from completing it, which I’m very excited about – more updates to follow on this one soon. Have a great Spring 2!


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