Making primary maths more creative: a seminar with Rob Eastaway



Follow this link for more information on this seminar, which takes place on 8th June:

Making primary maths more creative: a seminar with Rob Eastaway

I’ve already booked my place!

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Developing links between home and school

I am a mathematician

A great resource from Education Scotland to share with parents for learning at home. Follow this link: I am a Mathematician to view the document.

You can also find this on the Parents – supporting numeracy at home page.

It would be great to hear ways you promote parental involvement with your school – please comment or email if you would like to share!


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Fun with Numicon at Cauldeen Nursery!

Fantastic session with the morning and afternoon groups at Cauldeen nursery yesterday! We introduced Numicon to the children and explored ways we could use this to develop understanding of numerals, number word sequences and counting. As you can see this was lots of fun – and a great way to promote dialogue, questioning and enjoyment of numeracy.

Look back at this post for more information on how Numicon can be used as a resource to develop conceptual understanding:

Numicon and the Highland Numeracy Progression

Or please contact me if you are interested in training using Numicon or other concrete materials to support learning and teaching in numeracy.

Thank you to Cauldeen Primary for modelling great practice and making maths a fun and positive experience!



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Maths is about ideas and creativity, not just right answers!

Have a look at this short, but very inspiring maths video from Jo Boaler:

It’s amazing to see how the children’s attitudes to maths have changed in just 18 lessons! I particularly like one of the children’s analogy at the beginning to maths lessons as being in prison – “serving a sentence even though you’ve done nothing”! Through working as a team, discussing and sharing ideas and looking at problems from different perspectives their attitudes are completely transformed.

Key to this approach are:

  • use of visual materials
  • exploring different methods and strategies to solve problems
  • allowing lots of thinking time, rather than focusing on speed
  • learning from mistakes

All key principles of the Highland Numeracy Progression!

My favourite quote – “I thought math was all about right answers and wrong – now I believe that math is really about ideas and creativity – it’s a lot more inspiring.”

Not only were the group’s attitudes transformed, but they also improved their attainment on standardised tests by an average of 50% after 18 lessons. Find out more on YouCubed at Stanford University.


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Sharing effective practice in Highland


The National Numeracy Hub is a fantastic site for sharing resources and great practice – and we are very proud to contribute! Education Scotland came to film our numeracy training day in February and this is now available to access directly from the Hub.

Go to the Anytime Learning tile, then Module 32 – Sharing effective practice:


The day has been split into five sections and you will find these in Session 8:


Thank you so much to Barbara Gray from Education Scotland for coming along on the day and supporting with great advice and guidance.

It is fantastic to be able to contribute to the National Numeracy Hub and be part of this great opportunity to share effective practice on a national level! I’d love to hear your thoughts or feedback on these sessions, either by commenting or emailing me on

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Four maths boosting messages from Jo Boaler….

Watch this inspiring video from Jo Boaler for four key messages when learning maths:


  • Everyone can learn maths

  • Believe in yourself

  • Mistakes and struggle are important to our learning

  • Depth of thinking is more important than speed

Have a look in the Highland Numeracy Progression for lots of ideas to promote creative thinking and conceptual understanding with your children:






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Primary Enterprising Maths Challenge

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Just a few photos from the Primary Enterprising Maths Challenge on Wednesday!

Thank you so much to all the teams who entered – we were blown away by the maths skills, teamwork and enthusiasm from everyone! Well done to Avoch Primary who took the very first trophy for Highland, and Ullapool who came second – but also to every single team who were all winners in their fantastic attitude to maths.

A huge thank you to MillburnAcademy, Craig Lowther from the UHI and Helen Martin from the University of Aberdeen, and to all the wonderful adults who came along and were such a help with marking and organising the day.

Can’t wait till next year!




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