Results for "problem solving" (61)

Language, truth and logic

Written by: Greg Michaelson, Heriot Watt University.It’s curious how discussions about teaching programming often descend into arguments about the merits of different programming languages, especially for beginners.Right now, the main divide seems to be between visual languages, like Scratch, BYOB and AppInventor, and textual languages, like Python or Java....

Water: a calculated resource in mathematics

There are many water-based problems to be found in mathematics classrooms. How many times have you posed questions about filling up water containers, and then matching them with a depth-time graph?Then there is the well-known problem below:Two friends who have an eight-quart jug of water wish to share it evenly. They also have two empty jars, one...

Using Geoboards to develop mathematical thinking

I’m always on the lookout for more unusual questions about run-of-the-mill mathematics topics.When finding the area of a rectangle for example, students very often automatically look for the numbers to put into the formula. I was therefore intrigued by the area maze problems created by Japanese mathematician Naoki Inaba, as featured in Alex Bellos’ ‘Monday...

Algorithms + data structures = programs

Are we focusing more on algorithms and forgetting about data structure when writing computer programs? The fact is programming revolves around data either by processing data, storing or retrieving data and more innovative algorithms have been created by organising data efficiently which results in improved performance."Smart data structures and dumb code...

What do you need to succeed as a non-specialist teacher of mathematics?

Teacher recruitment has been, and remains, a popular topic in education news. The number of applications to enter the teaching profession fell from 19,330 in 2016 to 12,820 in 2017- a drop of 33%.What does that mean for schools and, in particular, for mathematics departments? Will there be fewer qualified mathematics teachers in the classroom?Government...

The Amazing D30

A material with a split personality, combining Textile, Product Design and Engineering!D30 is runny, like orange slime, when it’s moving slowly. But if you hit it with a hammer it’s as hard as metal. Wow!Helmets, motorcycle jackets, footwear, phone cases, clothing for stunt actors, and even boxing gloves can all be made using D30. You can see some amazing...

How can we develop pupils’ explanations in mathematics?

In my 12 year old son’s eyes I am a failing parent. Why? Because, despite spending many hours standing on the side of a football pitch, I still can’t explain the offside rule. I’ve had it explained to me on many an occasion, even once with the use of Lego figures for concrete modelling, but I still just don’t get it, let alone apply my understanding during...

Why improving gender diversity in STEM should be a priority

Currently, the UK has the lowest proportion of women in engineering of any European country, with females accounting for just 10% of roles and 14% of engineering university places.As part of this small cohort of female engineers, it seems as if thousands of skilled, innovative and talented women aren’t even considering engineering as a career. This should...

Inspiring tomorrow's engineers today

Who are tomorrow's engineers? I'd argue that every single student in your classroom could be an engineer.Typically, if you ask someone what an 'engineer' is they will reply with one or more of the following descriptors: introverted, nerdy, clever, fixes things, problem solver, dirty, mechanic, overalls, hard hat. And they work on cars, planes, trains and...

Lovelace, leaves and learning: how Network Rail inspires the next generation

As we celebrate National Careers Week, STEM Ambassador Kirsty Ivanoski-Nichol tells us about how she and Network Rail are breaking down the barriers to inspire young people into STEM careers.Once upon a time, there was a girl named Ada who loved machines…One night, Ada went to a ball. There she met a grumpy old mathematician named Charles Babbage.  Ada...

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