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Sinead Vaughan, AC for Bromley, Croydon, Lambeth, Lewisham, and Southwark

On 1 July, a group of nearly 100 A level Mathematics students and their teachers gathered at UCL Institute of Education to spend the day developing their problem-solving skills. They participated in the following four workshops which provided a variety of activities designed to get students to engage with problem solving.

Getting started – In this workshop students learned how to ask themselves some key questions when attempting mathematical problems and saw how problems were developed from simple ideas, then attempted to write some problems of their own.

Fermi Estimates – In this workshop students learned how to break down problems to identify the key information needed. Only basic arithmetical skills were required to solve the problems but each one required the students to have a clear idea of the information they needed and what makes a good estimate.

Working in a Group – In this workshop students worked in a group to solve a geometry problem.

Key Problem Solving Techniques – This lecture explained some key problem solving techniques and gave students the opportunity to try them out as the lecture progressed.

The teachers also participated in these workshops, and in addition had the opportunity to attend a session focused specifically on university admissions tests. 

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