Althea Scatliffe Primary School students found the fun in equations as they designed board games and participated in math Jeopardy during last week’s fifth annual Mathematics Week.
Principal Kesia King said the event helps reinforce what’s being taught in classrooms and offers students a deeper understanding of how equations play a role outside of school.
“We found in the past that students didn’t really like math, so whatever we can do to make them love it, we’re trying our best,” Ms. King said.
Students created their own math-based games for fellow students to enjoy, including a car race in which the only way to win was to quickly solve a series of questions along the multi-coloured tracks and cross the finish line first.
Putting together the board took some time, but student Sha’kye Turnbull said it helped him tackle division while having fun working with his teammates.
Sixth-graders Tafari Fieo, Sukanya Beason, Alexia Banton and Niaeika Aymer showed how to find the day in any given year, both past and future, using the “Key Value” method. This method uses codes for different months and years to calculate the day of the week, according to their presentation.
Another group created orange bingo boards with fractions, and the students who made it said having to come up with enough fractions to fill each board was helpful practice.
To the students who would be participating next year, student Janiah Roberts said, “Math is good. Math makes everything possible. It helps you in writing, driving, work, shopping, everything. Even if you don’t like maths, you need to learn it because it’s important.”
Students said they appreciated Mathematics Week because it gave them a more engaging, creative way to learn new concepts, and illustrated how people use math every day.
Ms. King said she was glad some parents go to see the students’ hard work during last Thursday’s open house, and she hopes to see an even higher attendance at next year’s event.
The principal said Mathematics Week also provides an opportunity for teachers to find out more about the “STEM” fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.
“From what the teachers gathered, it’s something that they would love to do more,” she said. “They seemed like they were going forward with trying to implement it in any way they can.”