[Cross posted, with some very minor changes, from LinkedIn.]
- self-motivated individuals who want to develop their grasp of maths at Level 2;
- employers/unions who want to provide staff (or, in the case of trade unions, their members) with a practical and flexible learning and development opportunity in maths;
- colleges and other learning providers who want to give enrolled learners an additional or alternative route to improving their maths.
To make use of Citizen Maths, learners need access to (and knowledge of how to use) a desktop or laptop computer with a broadband internet connection.
Here's a four-minute screen-cast about Citizen Maths from a learner's point of view:
Who is behind Citizen Maths?
What does Citizen Maths consist of?
We’ve designed Citizen Maths to involve between five and 10 hours of study for each powerful idea. It it built up from:
- short “to camera” videos and explanatory screencasts, by experienced maths tutors Paula Philpott and Noel-Ann Bradshaw;
- activities, tasks and other practical challenges, using
- applets that provide an onscreen manifestation of a powerful idea
- the Scratch programming environment
- standard tools like pencil and paper, and spreadsheets.
There are also frequent “low stakes” quizzes to help users check their understanding.
Why “powerful ideas in action”?
Citizen Maths engages people in familiar activity to reveal the ‘maths inside’, focusing on the way that maths has an immediate relevance to the problems we all of us have to solve every day. These problems could range from comparing deals and prices on groceries and creating a household budget, to understanding a payslip, creating sales forecasts, keeping track of savings and pensions, controlling a production process, or making political judgements. By putting problems in meaningful contexts, learners who do Citizen Maths will begin to grasp the power of mathematical ideas in action.
Which powerful ideas does Citizen Maths cover?
There will be five. During autumn 2014 we ran a proof of concept trial of Citizen Maths based on the powerful idea proportion. From mid October 2015 Citizen Maths will embrace, in addition, representation and uncertainty. From spring 2016 here will be two further powerful ideas: pattern and measurement. Here's a summary of the scope and importance of each.
- Proportion is about mixing, sharing, comparing, scaling and trading off. It sits behind many aspects of everyday maths, for example when you are sharing out costs, or altering a mixture, comparing amounts, or scaling something up or down.
- Uncertainty includes making decisions, playing, and simulating. It offers a way of thinking about uncertainty in personal and work-related situations, for example when making sense of risks to health, deciding whether to take out an extended warranty, or playing card games.
- Representation is about interpreting data and charts, comparing groups. It recognises how much we are influenced by data and the presentation of data, for example in media reports of opinion polls, interpreting stories about health risks, or comparing our own household income to that in the rest of the country.
- Pattern is about appreciating structure as in tiling, or knowing how to construct such structure. Pattern focuses on how mathematics can find and describe the regularities in both the natural and the man-made world, for example in the symmetries of animals and plants or in the design of buildings.
- Measurement includes reading a scale, converting, estimating, and quantifying. It picks up on the importance of measures and measurement in everyday and working life, for example when dispensing medication, converting currencies or estimating the size of a crowd.
To find out more, go to https://citizenmaths.com/. There is also this Slideshare presentation: