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Feb 232018
 

A letter to the Sheffield Star

 

Dear Editor

As someone who teaches maths for a living it saddens me when I see mathematical errors in your paper.

In a letter about Council Tax increases (21.2.18) Ron Sanderson claimed that last year’s 5.99% rise combined with this year’s 4.99% rise made a total increase of 10.98%. He has added the percentages, ignoring the fact that this year’s increase is 4.99% more than the new total for last year.

For every 100p you paid in Council Tax in 2016, you paid 100 x 1.0599 in 2017.
In 2018 you will pay 100 x 1.0599 x 1.0499 which equals 111.28p or an increase of 11.28%

Understanding percentages is vital when working out things like Council Tax rises, pay claims, credit agreements or interest earnt on investments. People who don’t understand percentages and APR’s are much more likely to be ripped off. If you need help with maths visit my website at www.mathswithgraham.org.uk where you will find free activities, some with a Sheffield theme such as the Sheaf Valley Maths Trail, to help people of all levels, from the very basic up to Higher GCSE.

Yours faithfully

Maths with Graham

Here is the original letter.

 Posted by at 9:00 pm
Jun 212017
 

mapThe Sheaf Valley Maths Trail is a short walk starting outside Sheffield City College on Granville Road, along the footpath to Sheffield Station and the steel blade sculpture, behind the station to the steel steps and the amphitheatre, up the hill to the Cholera Monument and then back to college via Clay Wood. Along the way you will answer questions on many different aspects of mathematics. It is suitable for school groups, college students studying Functional Skills, home schoolers and their parents or anyone who would like to have a go!

Download the student booklet here. It is best printed as a booklet.

amphitheatrescaledThere are also a teachers booklet and a powerpoint which I will send to you on request. Email graham@mathswithgraham.org.uk to request these. Please let me know who you are planning to use it with.

Topics touched on on the trail include

Number

Counting

Multiplication

Fractions

Time calculations

Reading a timetable

Calculating journey cost

Speed Distance Time calculations

Shape and Space

Measuring length

Estimating length and weight

Symmetry (Line and Rotational)

3 dimensional shape

Angles

Circle calculations

Volume of a cuboid

Area of irregular shapes

Data Handling

Averages

monument

 

Feel free to adapt the trail by missing out some questions and adding others to make it suitable for your students/pupils.

Split your group into teams of 3 or 4 people. Make sure less able students are paired with more able students. Each team will need a DIY tape measure, a large ball of string, a large protractor, a pencil and a calculator. You need to work out the logistics of ensuring there is someone to help at the various stopping points.

Tell your students to stay together, look after each other and take extra care when crossing roads. If this is a school/college outing you will need to fill in a risk assessment.

 

 

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Penrose Triangle sheffcol_logo

 

Nov 082015
 

This exercise involves reading and analysing data from charts, calculating averages and percentages and estimating length. It will also help you with the Driving Theory Test and hopefully help you to stay safe when you are driving.
There is an interactive version here and a worksheet version here.
stoppingdistanceswithoutcarlengthsscaled

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can download the answers here